Thoughts on Le’Veon Bell
Le’Veon Bell decided not to report and will sit out the entire year. Why do you believe he made that decision? Are the Steelers interested in bringing him back next season?
NS: Le’Veon didn’t show for a number of reasons but many believe the main one was his concern to be transition tagged next offseason. If he showed and played well, Pittsburgh could consider placing the tag on him over the offseason. It’s still an option after not showing, but the Steelers probably had enough with his negotiation tactics and are ready to move on.
DD: Oh man, I just knew there’d be a question about him in here. Le’Veon Bell is one of the best running backs in all of football. There are so many little factors as to why he chose to sat out, but simply put: He values his long-term financial success over his short-term success.
Essentially, Bell and the Steelers organization weren’t seeing eye to eye in contract negotiations, whether it be annual salary (Bell was rumored to want around $17 million) or guaranteed money (Bell wanted about $45 million in guaranteed money).
The belief was that Bell, who received over 400 touches in 2017, would be used heavily again in 2018 before being waved good-bye. In all likelihood, that would have happened again, so Bell and his camp would rather preserve his body and save himself for an open market to secure long-term financial security.
The second part to this question is perhaps the biggest one the Steelers will have to face in some time. The Steelers are indeed interested in bringing him back, as they’ve shown to be persistent in talks with him even up to the week ten deadline for Bell to show up.
The question, however, is how interested are they? Should James Conner not have played so excellent, this may be a conversation where the Steelers are willing to fork a little more cash to Bell. However, having a younger running back that will cost significantly less is more appetizing to the front office.
It’s clear Bell wants his money, and the Steelers front office do want him to stay in Pittsburgh, yet if the drama and sitting continues, the Steelers may have no other choice but to move on from Bell.