Bengals hope to sign Joe Mixon to contract extension this offseason

James Rapien

The Bengals have had a busy offseason. They committed nearly $150 million to eight free agents. They took Joe Burrow with the No. 1 pick and added a bunch of other pieces in the NFL Draft, including three linebackers. 

After an offseason full of additions, their focus shifts towards retaining their own guys. Some of the Bengals' best players are entering the final year of their contracts. 

It sounds like running back Joe Mixon could be priority number one. Bengals Director of Player Personnel Duke Tobin made it clear that the organization wants to keep Mixon beyond the 2020 season.

"Joe's obviously a guy that's shown a lot of ability," Tobin told Lance McAlister on 700 WLW in Cincinnati. "He's in a year that he can be extended and he is a guy that we have visited with. We'll go through those discussions and see if there's a fit or a match for a long-term contract with him. [He's] Obviously a guy that we value quite a bit."

The Bengals drafted Mixon with the 48th pick in the 2017 NFL Draft. He's topped the 1,000-yard rushing yard mark in each of the past two seasons. He was ninth in the NFL last season with 1,137 yards.

Cincinnati also has to make a decision on 7-time Pro Bowler A.J. Green, who they franchise tagged this offseason. They have until July 15 to sign Green to a long-term deal.

Mixon is younger and doesn't come with the injury concerns that Green does, which could vault him to the top of the Bengals' priority list. 

"The great thing about Joe is he goes about it the right way. He's enthusiastic. He prepares hard and he plays hard," Tobin continued. "He's the type of guy you want to lock up to a long-term deal and we'll see if we can find the commonality to get that done over time here."

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