Mixon was suspended by Oklahoma for the full 2014 season after he punched a woman, breaking four bones in her face, in a Norman, Oklahoma, deli. The 20-year-old reached a civil settlement agreement last Friday with the woman. He accepted a plea deal in the criminal case stemming from the incident.
Joe, what was your reaction when you got that call, how emotional was it for you?
Joe Mixon: It was very emotional. I’m still sitting here crying. I can’t believe it. Very thankful. Very honored to be a part of the Cincinnati Bengals.
Joe, describe your visits here, what you had to talk to them about and maybe convince them of.
JM: Just go there and tell the truth, look them in the eye and be very sincere. After going there and having a good talk with Coach [Marvin] Lewis, the GM and owner, I feel like the reason why they selected me, they feel very comfortable. They’ve seen the type of person I was. I was very genuine to them. I was very straight up. I can’t do nothing but thank the owners, the organization and Coach Lewis for the opportunity.
What did they talk about in terms of a support system for you?
JM: [Crying] [inaudible] get a support team around me. They have a PR person. We’re going to get with my agent and get with them and come up with some things for us to get ready to do. I’m looking very forward to it.
From a football perspective, what do you think you bring to the Bengals?
JM: I think I bring the piece that they was missing. I feel like I’m going to be very dynamic in that offense. I really feel like me and John Ross are going to bring something to the table that never seen before. We’re looking forward to coming out there, of course the ultimate goal is the Super Bowl.
Joe, obviously you’re very emotional. You mentioned that, were there any fears for you about how far you would drop considering everything that happened?
JM: Honestly, I didn’t know. Everything was up in the air. I was blessed to come out as a Cincinnati Bengal. I can’t thank them enough.
Joe, did you have a pretty good idea that this was the team?
JM: Honestly I had a good idea about it, but I wasn’t too sure, especially when they switched out with Minnesota. I wasn’t sure. But at the end of the day they picked me up and we rocking, we’re riding.
What have these two days been like for you?
JM: It was a very exciting process, little anxious in the process, but at the end of the day it’s all over with and I can lift that bridge off my shoulders and thank the Cincinnati Bengals.
How has this whole situation changed you?
JM: It changed me a lot as a person, the way you think, the way you carry yourself, go about things. The way Oklahoma helped me, I can’t thank them enough, either. I’m going to continue to keep doing the right thing around the community, on and off the field. And I’m going to prove to them why they kept me. Leaving from Oklahoma, I still have their name. At the end of the day, I’m going to do whatever I can to make them proud and make them happy. I’m looking forward to doing that with the Cincinnati Bengals as well.
How involved do you plan to get in the community?
JM: Very involved. Mostly with the younger kids around the community, whether an AAU team, football team, children’s hospital — I like doing a lot of things like that. I have a big family. Most people don’t get that talking to, or that person to be around them for advice, or anything like that. That’s what I’m going to do, just to change somebody’s life. You never know who’s going through it.
Do you kind of feel like there’s no room for error going forward, that you have to be absolutely perfect in everything you do, or has that been the case for a while for you?
JM: It’s been the case forever, really. But at the end of the day I’m just looking forward to being the best teammate and best person around the Cincinnati Bengals community and organization.
Where are you right now and what kind of atmosphere is it? Are there a lot of people there, or what’s going on?
JM: I’m with all my family right now. It was very emotional, especially getting picked. I just looked at the TV and they said my name and I just broke down and started crying. And my family came over and said congratulations. It was the best feeling in the world, and I wouldn’t trade it with anything.
So it’s just a family get-together?
JM: Yes, sir.