PFF scouting report: Joe Mixon, RB, Oklahoma

The PFF analysis team breaks down the prospects of Oklahoma's Joe Mixon ahead of the 2017 NFL Draft.

| 2 months ago
(Joshua Gately, Getty Images)

(Joshua Gately, Getty Images)

PFF scouting report: Joe Mixon, RB, Oklahoma


Name: Joe Mixon

School: Oklahoma

Position fit: Potential every-down running back who can make a significant impact as a receiver out of the backfield

Stats to know: Forced a missed tackle once for every 3.9 offensive touches, and his nine missed tackles forced on receptions were tied for fifth-most in the draft class.

What he does best:

  • Burst can beat defenders to the edge, although doesn’t have elite, breakaway top speed.
  • Excellent receiving ability out of the backfield, both at the catch point and after the catch.
  • Had to body-catch many targets due to route and throw location, but does show good hands when given the opportunity.
  • Forces missed tackles in multiple ways. Possesses the elusiveness to make defenders miss, and also the strength to break through tackles.
  • Shows quickness and lateral agility to make defenders miss in the hole.
  • Forward lean helps him gain yards after contact, but it can also cause him to get off balance and go down earlier than he should from linebackers and safety just throwing themselves into him without wrapping up.

Biggest concerns:

  • Shows average vision and patience. Pacing can be off at times and he can be late recognizing a seam that has opened up. Will he be as successful in a non-spread offense when reads aren’t as clear?
  • Pass protection is an unknown due to heavy use as a receiver. Stayed in to block on less than 20 percent of passing plays, and actually engaged with defenders on even fewer plays. Allowed five pressures on 98 snaps where he stayed in to pass block over two years.
  • Off-field incident was about as bad as it can get. Poses PR nightmare and moral decision for teams.

Player comparison: Matt Forte, New York Jets

Although Mixon is a bit heavier, both have a similar build and overall athleticism. While they are on the bigger side of the frame spectrum and show power, both are more elusive than powerful as runners. Mixon also possesses exceptional receiving skills and has the potential to be an every-down back in the NFL.

Bottom line: Despite his larger frame, Mixon is clearly more elusive than powerful, but still shows the ability to break tackles with strength. He has room to improve his vision and patience as a runner. He was able to overcome it at times with pure athletic ability, but that likely won’t work as often in the NFL. Mixon is dynamic enough to be a game-changer as both a runner and receiver and has the potential to be an every-down running back. Strictly on the field, that would put him in the top-tier in this class and a potential first-round draft pick. However, his off-field incident raises concerns, from afar, whether he should be drafted at all, has reportedly caused some teams to remove him from draft boards completely, and will likely cause him to drop in the draft, at least to a degree.

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  • John Mack

    Mixon’s off field incident was not “about as bad as it can get.” Save that for guys like Aaron Hernandez. He punched someone in the heat of the moment. Not even nearly as bad as what Ray Rice did.

    • johnforamerica

      How is this any better than Ray Rice? You’re a sick fuck man.

      • Pandabucks

        I’m not excusing it at all, but it was 3 years ago and he’s been exemplary since then. He paid the price, went through all the counseling, and is hailed by his coaches as a team leader.

        Look John, if we can’t believe in people changing their ways through the programs we assign them, then why assign the programs?

        Green Bay should draft this kid and start him Day 1.

        • johnforamerica

          You didn’t answer my question. “HOW IS THIS BETTER THAN RAY RICE?”

          Everything you said is a separate issue, and applies equally to Rice and Mixon.

    • shaunhan murray

      Yeah in the heat of the moment he fractured a woman’s face in multiple places

      • K-Dub(F.E.F.)

        Should of kept her hands to herself. She should of been arrested too…

      • John Mack

        Yes, and that’s less bad than knocking out your girlfriend in an elevator and then dragging her out.

    • Kaedwon

      Not even as bad as what Dalvin Cook did. But nobody cares about dogs anymore I guess.

      • K-Dub(F.E.F.)

        Dalvin Cook has WAY more red flags….

  • John Mack

    First of all, Joe Mixon was charged with a misdemeanor. Ray Rice was initially charged with a felony. One is worse than the other. Second, Mixon was in a heated confrontation where allegedly someone directed a racial slur at him. That doesn’t excuse his behavior, but it sheds some light on why he acted the way he did. Finally, some people can actually use logic and reason to determine if event A is comparable to event B. On the other hand, people like you resort to Ad hominem attacks, which is no argument at all.

  • K-Dub(F.E.F.)

    PFF you guys need to gtf OVER IT! He made a bad decision as an 18 year old one night and PAID for it! Do you even understand how the legal system works??? He was LEGALLY Assaulted first and technically retaliated. The ONLY reason it matters to people is because it was a woman if you swap Sexes or he hits a man nobody cares. More importantly than that night though is what has happened since. He took a plea he didnt have to, went to counseling as he was ordered, and has been a model student and citizen. What do you guys and people like you who keep saying things like he should never play want??? Get over it….

    • Pandabucks

      I agree. It’s been 3 years of excellent living since then. Green Bay should draft him and count themselves very, very lucky.

  • Pandabucks

    I agree with this pick. Green Bay would be ideal for Joe Mixon.

    The incident was awful, but 3 years ago–with zero problems since. Mixon’s O-Coordinator says he’ll be a team captain in the pros.

    There’s no excuses here, just reality: He paid the price and changed his ways for an extended period of time. That red flag is looking faded and worn.

    • Ana Lins

      Agreed. He made a bad mistake, and is paying for it. His tape is amazing, and I believe young guys should be given a second chance, especially when they seem to be trying to do better. He’s a great talent, sure worth a shot.