It’s what Zac Taylor is hoping he can be and why immediately after drafting Chris Evans in the sixth round, Taylor asked him to watch film of Giovani Bernard in pass protection.
Evans followed his coach’s orders and quickly realized the opportunity he has in front of him.
“I know that’s gonna be a big part of my success,” Evans said. “However long I play in the NFL if you can pass protect just like how Gio did, you can hang around for a long, long time, especially if you can run routes. I took pride in that especially after I had that conversation and I was just like that’s what I’m gonna do. And Joe after the play was like ‘good block.’ And I was like ‘hey, that’s what I’m here for. I just gotta take pride in that and keep pushing and keep striving to get better.”
Evans got his shot when Perine went on the COVID list, and he took full in Week 6. The story said if Evans continues to make the most of his opportunities when they come, he could become what the old No. 25 was to the current Bengals. It's key for fantasy owners because the oft-injured Mixon saw Bernard take over as the team's RB1 when Mixon was out before this season, and that means Evans could eventually be the handcuff to Mixon at the very least. For now, he could play a big role in the passing game.
It remains to be seen what Perine's status will be for Week 6. With Mixon battling an ankle injury, Perine caught four balls for 24 yards and a TD against the Packers this past week. If Perine can't dress for Week 6, and Mixon is still dealing with his injury, Evans could emerge as fantasy relevant, especially in a matchup against the Lions in Week 6.
Earlier on Monday, and as we reported, an ESPN report indicated Mixon is week-to-week with an ankle injury suffered against the Jaguars last Thursday, putting his Week 5 status in doubt. But this is at least some good news he could go in Week 5. Perine and Evans could also factor in more if the team doesn't want to give Mixon a big workload if he's not 100%. It will be worth monitoring this week and checking out the injury report on Wednesday.