Joe Mixon and the Bengals have agreed to a restructured contract that will keep the former Pro Bowl running back in Cincinnati for the 2023 season, according to multiple reports.
Mixon was entering the third year of a four-year, $48 million deal and was due $9.4 million in base salary this season that was not guaranteed. His cap hit before the new deal was slated at $12.8 million. Terms of the restructured deal weren’t immediately clear.
Mixon’s new contract arrives as running backs across the NFL face a stagnant market that doesn’t value the position like it used to. Some of the league’s top backs are struggling to find compensation in line with what they believe is commensurate with their talent and contributions.
Four-time Pro Bowl running back Dalvin Cook remains a free agent at 27 years old after being released by the Minnesota Vikings. Fellow Pro Bowlers Saquon Barkley and Josh Jacobs — the 2022 NFL rushing champion — are preparing to hold out as they approach training camp under franchise tags and without long-term extensions.
Mixon’s status for the 2023 was uncertain as he approached the upcoming season with a non-guaranteed contract. Now he’ll play at least one more season as a key contributor to a high-powered offense alongside quarterback Joe Burrow and wide receivers Ja’Marr Chase and Tee Higgins.
The group has led the Bengals to consecutive trips to the AFC championship game and a berth in the Super Bowl after the 2021 season. The 2023 Bengals will have their sights set squarely on winning the franchise’s first Lombardi Trophy.
Mixon, 26, tallied 814 rushing yards and seven touchdowns last season on 3.9 yards per carry in 14 games. He caught 60 passes for 441 yards and two more touchdowns. He’s now slated to again be the lead running back in Cincinnati in a backfield that also features fifth-round rookie Chase Brown and fifth-year pro Trayveon Williams, who’s tallied 238 yards on 5.1 yards per carry for his career. Samjae Perine, who shared the backfield with Mixon for the last three seasons, joined the Denver Broncos as a free agent this offseason.