Mixon, who was caught on video punching a woman in the face, is a Top 10 talent. He never would have dropped to the second round had it not been for the incident, in which he was not charged, his freshman year.
If Mixon is gone before the Bengals pick at 41, look for them to target a defensive player, either at defensive end or linebacker.
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Cornerback and offensive line also could be in play by the time the Bengals move into the third round.
They will have eight picks on Saturday, so they can afford to follow the best-player-available philosophy in the second and third rounds before addressing specific needs in Rounds 4-7 on Saturday.