As most teams are doing, the Bengals just released their day one depth chart. It might have surprised some people to see rookie running back and expected fantasy football star Joe Mixon to be listed as the team’s third running back, behind Jeremy Hill and Giovani Bernard:
FWIW, #Bengals official depth chart for Sunday. I'll be more concerned about snap counts than anything listed here. pic.twitter.com/yG1Rp8BRFO— Paul Dehner Jr. (@pauldehnerjr) September 5, 2017
Should all the Joe Mixon owners be worried? Should everyone be listening to the wise words of rapper and scholar Snoop Dogg and dropping Mixon like he’s hot? Should we be running out onto the streets screaming “WHY ME??? WHYYYYY MEEEEE????”
For starters, we all know depth charts fluctuate throughout the season. Mixon could be number one on the Bengals’ depth chart by next week if he puts together a fantastic game and Hill or Bernard struggle. This is by no means dooming him to a failed season. Secondly, as a rookie, this was by far and away the most likely starting spot for him. Unless he had put together a fantastic preseason or the Bengals had suffered a serious injury in the backfield, it stands to reason that they’d give the majority of playing time to the veteran backs.
Like Paul Dehner mentions in his tweet, I’m looking for snap counts rather than position on the team’s official depth chart. This likely means that Mixon will have to work for his targets and carries but given how he was used in the preseason, I wouldn’t be surprised if the Bengals still find a few ways of incorporating him into the game plan.
What this does mean is that at least for the first part of the season, Hill has some decent fantasy value. We’ll see how touches all play out but the eventual changing of the guard in Cincinnati might take longer than we initially expected.
For me, the biggest thing from the Bengals’ depth chart is they have Mixon as their second kick returner. If that’s yet another role Mixon grows into, it’s just another opportunity for him to score points. Who wouldn’t want one or two kick return touchdowns thrown into a productive rookie season?
Are you worried Mixon will be trapped in RB3 spot?
This poll is closed
Not in the slightest
Maybe, but I don’t see Hill holding onto the starting gig forever