CINCINNATI (AP) — In 24 hours, Joe Mixon went from a worrying hospital visit with a mysterious chest injury to busting out for one of the best games of his career.
The fourth-year running back missed practice late in the week and said he went to a hospital Saturday with pain in his chest and difficulty breathing. He didn’t say exactly what doctors told him, but he thought he might have hurt himself by sleeping on it wrong.
Mixon sure looked fine Sunday, though, rushing for 151 yards on 25 carries with two touchdowns and adding a third score on a 9-yard swing pass from rookie quarterback Joe Burrow in the Bengals’ 33-25 win over the Jacksonville Jaguars.
“The doctors loved up on me, and I was able to go out there and make some things work,” Mixon said.
The Bengals (1-2-1) rolled up 505 yards of offense, working through or around some of their recent offensive line problems to get their first win. Getting the running game unstuck allowed some better looks downfield for Burrow, who became the first rookie in NFL history to throw for 300 or more yards in three consecutive games.
The Heisman Trophy winner completed 25 of 36 attempts for exactly 300 yards and the touchdown to Mixon.
After being hit 18 times and sacked eight times in a 23-23 tie against Philadelphia last week, Burrow went about his business without much trouble from the Jaguars’ pass rush. He was sacked once.
“The O-line played really, really well today,” Burrow said. “They’ve taken a lot of heat the last couple weeks, and I was super happy for those guys to have the game they did today and they’re going to continue to build on it. I know they are.”
Gardner Minshew was able to put up some good numbers, too, going 27 for 40 for 351 yards and two touchdowns for Jacksonville (1-3).
“We ran the ball well today, threw it well at times,” Minshew said. “We have to stay away from drive killers, away from turnovers, and I believe we can be really good.”
The start was inauspicious for Cincinnati. After linebacker Jordan Evans intercepted a tipped Minshew pass, the Bengals started on Jacksonville’s 40 and got nowhere, with Burrow overthrowing an open A.J. Green on third down.
Late in the first quarter, Burrow had a 16-yard touchdown pass to Tyler Boyd negated by a holding penalty and the Bengals settled for Randy Bullock’s 35-yard field goal. Then, looking at third-and goal from the Jacksonville 1, Burrow threw one up for grabs and was intercepted by linebacker Myles Jack in the end zone.
The Bengals started getting out of their own way on a drive late in the first half that ended in the touchdown pass to Mixon on a wheel route. Mixon then got free and tore down the right side for a 34-yard score to cap the first drive of the second half, giving the Bengals their first lead, 17-13. Mixon scored his third TD of the day on a run right up the middle of the defense.
Aldrick Rosas was added to the Jacksonville roster from the practice squad after the team ran out of kickers. Josh Lambo (hip) is on injured reserve, and rookie Brandon Wright was waived after straining his right hamstring in a Week 3 loss to Miami. Stephen Hauschka was signed Monday but was inactive because of soreness. Rosas, who was cut by the New York Giants in the summer, was added Saturday. He missed a 48-yard attempt in the first quarter but converted on four others, including a 50-yarder in the second half.
SPEAKING OF KICKERS
After missing a 31-yard attempt that would have tied the Bengals’ opener against the Los Angeles Chargers late in the fourth quarter, Bullock has been perfect. He made all four field goal attempts and three PATs against Jacksonville. He has hit 12 straight field goals and nine PATs since the miss.
Jaguars: CB CJ Henderson left in the first half with a shoulder injury and didn’t return. Jack left with an ankle injury in the first half and also was ruled out. TE Tyler Eifert was being evaluated for a concussion. CB D.J. Hayden (hamstring) left in the second half and didn’t return.
Bengals: Green had a wrist injury and didn’t return.
Jaguars: Visit Houston Sunday.
Bengals: Travel to Baltimore Sunday.