Joe Mixon, known lately for punching a woman on camera, was picked up by the Cincinnati Bengals as the 48th overall pick, on Friday during the second round of the NFL draft.
Though the incident occurred before his freshman season at Oklahoma in 2014, Mixon was still predicted to be a Day 2 choice by many draft analysts. During his conference call on Monday, Mixon said he couldn’t believe that he was chosen and that he is excited to play for the Bengals.
After the footage of Mixon punching the woman, Oklahoma decided to suspend him for a season. Amelia Molitor, also a student at Oklahoma, was the woman in the video. The two were in a confrontation before he hit her. According to reports, Molitor was in the hospital with bone fractures in her face. The video of the incident wasn’t made public until December of 2016.
Now 20 years old, Mixon finished a year of probation and 100 hours of community service, as well as behavioral counseling. Molitor filed a civil lawsuit against Mixon, and a settlement was reached last week.
Marvin Lewis, one of the coaches for the Bengals, told reporters that the team chose to give Mixon a chance after reviewing the material and looking at every aspect of the incident.
Lewis also says that although many are upset with what they saw, the team feels that Mixon is very remorseful for what he did, he has to live with it every day. However, he deserves an opportunity to grow and mature from the incident.
Of the new draft class, Mixon is seen as one of the top running backs. HAlthough he wasn’t invited to the scouting combine, he did very well during pro day. He ran the 40-yard dash in 4.5 seconds. Mixon met with up to 15 teams before being picked. A few didn’t even have his name on their draft lists.
While on The Rich Eisen show earlier this month, Mixon said that he has grown since the incident. He says he doesn’t deny that he did not make the right decisions that day.
Mixon also says that he learned a lot from the situation and he has learned a lot about himself. He says he is trying to move forward and is remaining positive.
When Mixon came back to Oklahoma after his suspension, he hit 753 yards scoring seven touchdowns in 2015. Altogether, he has ran 1,812 yards and 15 touchdowns as of last year.