If you’re wondering why Joe Mixon had zero carries over the final 38 minutes and 30 seconds of a 29-14 Cincinnati Bengals loss at Pittsburgh on Sunday, you have plenty of company, including the rookie running back himself.
“If it worked in the first half, why not do it in the second half,” Mixon said.
Mixon rushed seven times for 48 yards in the first 21:30, including a career-long run of 25 yards to set up the first Bengals touchdown, and a 17-yard rush five plays before the second touchdown.
“It’s frustrating,” Mixon said. “I mean, I’m seeing Bell get the ball 35 times. I get it seven in the first half and then don’t touch the ball again. Jeremy (Hill) got one touch in the second half. It’s frustrating to us running backs. We’re in the room and we feel like we’re part of the offense. If it worked in the first half, why not do it in the second half.”
Bell turned his 35 carries into 134 yards, which didn’t impress Mixon much.
“I feel like I could do way more than (Bell) did,” he said. “I only got seven carries. I can’t showcase nothing if I don’t get the ball. There ain’t nothing else I can say.”
Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis didn’t have much to say about it either.
“He was in there in the third quarter, and whatever plays were called were called,” Lewis said.
Hill (four carries, 7 yards) was the running back for the first series of the third quarter, and Giovani Bernard (three carries, 8 yards) was in the backfield for the second series.
The first drive featured a Hill 1-yard run as part of a three and out.
The second series lasted two plays. Bernard ran for 8 yards on first down, then Joe Haden intercepted an errant Andy Dalton pass that bounced off the right hand of A.J. Green.