Rookie brought high buzz for fourth-round draft pick, but must wait until 2017 to prove himself after being sidelined for 2016 with knee injury (meniscus tear) suffered in practice prior to preseason opener ... Dubbed as “College Football’s Strongest Player’ by NFL.com in early ’16, he was rated among analysts as potential steal for Bengals, widely touted as best prospect not selected until Day 3 of NFL Draft ... Mainstay for program that went 32-7 during his three seasons, he was Associated Press first-team All-American in 2015 ... Also Co-Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year and conference Defensive Lineman of the Year.
Career transactions: Selected by Cincinnati in fourth round of 2016 NFL Draft (122nd overall) ... Signed with Bengals on 5-25-16.
2016 recap: Suffered season-ending knee injury (meniscus tear) in practice on Aug. 10; placed on Reserve/Injured list on Aug. 30.
College: Played three seasons (2013-15) at Baylor, playing 36 games, and 25 of his 27 starts came over his last two seasons ... Did not play a position conducive to high tackling numbers, but 30 of his career 106 stops were for losses ... Started 12 games in ’15 for 10-3 club that ended season with victory over North Carolina in Russell Athletic Bowl ... Fifteen of his 40 tackles in ’15 were for losses, and he had career-best 5.5 sacks, earning unanimous first-team All-Big 12 selection ... Started 13 games in ’14 for 11-2 team that won Big 12 championship ... Consensus first-team all-conference in his first year as a starter ... Made debut as a true freshman in ’13 or 11-2 team, playing in 11 games (two starts) ... Six tackles in his first college start, a victory over Texas that clinched Big 12 championship and secured Baylor’s first BCS bowl berth.
Personal: Hometown is Waco, Texas ... Communications major at Baylor ... Father played college baseball and mother ran college track ... Attended Waco (Texas) High School, where he earned Class 4A all-state honors as a senior ... Coaches credited with 266 “pancake” hits on opposing players over his final two seasons ... Following his senior season, was ranked the No. 12 defensive line prospect in the nation by Rivals.com and Scout.com.
If they happened to look up at the walkway above the Bengals weight room, they saw Joe Mixon take his first steps in Paul Brown Stadium Saturday. And the fans at the Bengals draft party cheered and yelled welcome as he paused, as if not quite sure if it was for him. He held up his right and waved on his way to the elevator with the cheers chasing after him.
NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport explains why former Baylor defensive tackle Andrew Billings was drafted in the fourth round of the 2016 NFL Draft, a later round than projected.