Editor's note: The Fantasy Film Projector is a process that identifies player traits typically correlated with fantasy football success. Those traits include receiving ability and route running (points per reception leagues), play strength and competitive toughness (goal line, short yardage traits for touchdown-based leagues) and explosiveness (long distance touchdown ability huge ceiling potential). You can read past editions of the Fantasy Film Projector by clicking the links below.
Oklahoma running back Joe Mixon compares a lot to Larry Johnson, the former Kansas City Chief running back.
Things that stand out most with Mixon is ability to change direction at difficult angles but not lose speed through the transition which causes defenders to lose their angle. He's a very decisive runner who can tempo his running down to set up blocks, similar to what Le'Veon Bell does in Pittsburgh. He's a good receiver out of the backfield that transitions from the catch smoothly to get upfield and create more positive yardage.
Not an overly explosive player in terms of breakaway. You wonder if he's going to have a lot of long runs in the NFL. But there are plenty of great running backs who weren't crazy explosive that possessed the kind of cutting ability, vision, receiving ability and decisiveness that Mixon has and were very effective fantasy running backs. Plus, the way he sets running backs up with his cutting ability should allow him to create more space without having to outrun fast NFL defenders.
Could be a very steady player that consistently gets 100-yard games, much like Larry Johnson did in Kansas City.
Mixon recorded 28 and 37 catches in 2015 and 2016, respectively. Had 538 yards and five touchdowns in 2016.
Mixon ranked 31st in total rush yards in 2016, but a lot of that had to do with sharing the carry load with teammate Samaje Perine.
Mixon has a great jump cut and shows patience when setting up blocks. He's an ideal fit for a zone-blocking scheme. Makes good decisions in the open field. Doesn't try to do too much with runs.
Mixon has the prototypical size and strength you like out of a running back, standing 6'0, 228 lbs.
He didn't participate in the combine, with all his measurables coming from his Pro Day.
Mixon performed very well at his Pro Day, running a 4.5 40 which landed him in the 67th percentile among running backs.
Mixon has some baggage, stemming from an altercation in 2014 where he punched a woman in a nightclub.