Fowler: Le’Veon Bell Says He Hasn’t Thought About When He’ll Sign Franchise Tag

Earlier this afternoon, Le’Veon Bell made a brief comment/dig after failing to get a long-term deal done with the Pittsburgh Steelers. Now, he’s made his first formal comments, talking to ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler about the negotiation impasse and his future with the team.

With a deal not getting done, the most immediate question becomes when Bell will decide to show up to training camp. He is allowed to sign the tender whenever he wants to without any punishment from the team. Many have speculated Bell will wait until well into August to finally sign, similar to Eric Berry last season. Bell told Fowler he hadn’t given a reporting date any thought. He did note, however, he doesn’t need much time to get ready.

“The way I train, all it’s going to take for me is a few practices and some game action,” he told Fowler, who grabbed some awesome quotes from Bell. “I haven’t thought about it that far. I’m game-planning today. I was thinking the deal would be done. I’m going to take it day-to-day and see what happens.”

Bell told Fowler entering the day, he was hopeful an extension would get done but didn’t believe what the Steelers’ ultimately offered matched his value. He went on to say he was optimistic a deal will get done after the year, stating he wants to remain a Steeler, but in the same breath, said today was a “big eye opener.”

The Steelers will still have the option to retain Bell with the franchise tag next year, worth $14.4 million. But that’s far from an ideal option for either side. To use the Berry story again, he threatened to hold out and never sign his tender after getting tagged this past winter; the Kansas City Chiefs worked out a long-term deal with him shortly after.

His future is obviously unclear, both in the short-term – when he’ll report – and his long-term future with the team. But once he does report, the “next year” stuff can be thought about exactly then – next year. For now, it’s about the Steelers’ offense having its best ever group on paper and translating that into sustainable success and ultimately, a Super Bowl run.

About the Author

Alex Kozora

Full-time blogger from mom’s basement. Marrying tape and statistics. Chidi Iwuoma is my favorite Steeler of all-time.

  • pittsburghjoe

    Be prepared LB… You are going to take a beating this year. In essence you are a one year rental. If there is anything physically left, you may be rented for another year, if Ben sticks around.

  • Chris92021

    I am going to say after the 2nd preseason game is when Bell will sign. If it was the old CBA, I would say Bell would hold out into the regular season but they way it is designed now, the players have little leverage. Like it matter since the starters on offense weren’t getting that many snaps in preseason anyway and someone of Bell’s experience needs minimal reps in preseason and training camp. Bell needs to prove he can finish a season on the field instead on IR or on the sidelines.

  • JohnnyFootball

    He also said Bell sees himself as not only the top RB in league, but the Steelers number 2 WR. Can’t say I disagree with him. Mentioned that it didn’t sound like they were even close on a deal too after talking to Bell.

  • Beaver Falls Hosiery

    Bell has until the 27th; if he decides not to show then he begins to devalue himself. Unusual behavior for someone who wants to be valued.

  • steelmann58

    NO ONE that stupid not to sign his tag and pass on 12 million. He need again to stay Healthy and clean and put up big numbers. The steelers always have taken care of the franchise players and will do the same with Bell just like they did with Brown .

  • JohnnyFootball

    More Bell quotes:

    “It’s a little frustrating, but it’s a business,” said Bell, according to ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler. “I’m not in a rush to sign for something I’m not valued at, if I feel I’m worth more than what they are offering me.”

    “The running back market definitely took a hit, and I can’t be the guy who continues to let it take a hit,” Bell said. “We do everything. We block, we run, we catch the ball. Our value isn’t where it needs to be. I’m taking it upon myself to open up some eyes and show the position is more valuable.”

    “I guess when it comes to camp and doing extra things when I’m training, I can’t be as aggressive as I normally would be because there’s no longevity,” Bell said. “But I’m still going to be out there and be Le’Veon Bell. … The way I train, all it’s going to take for me is a few practices and some game action. I haven’t thought about it that far. I’m game-planning today. I was thinking the deal would be done. I’m going to take it day-to-day and see what happens.”

    “I want to be valued,” Bell said.

    Sounds like he wasn’t joking about wanting 15m a year. He is gonna come close over next 2 years either way.

  • Matt Manzo

    I’m confused now! I thought we couldn’t sign him after the deadline? How did Barry get a deal “shortly” after?

  • Ed Smith

    It always has been and will continue to be about the money with Bell. He seriously thinks he’s the #2 WR with Bryant back? Not paid for what you DID, paid for what you bring going forward. No way does his WR skill set beat Bryant. Bell is good for short stuff, red zone. Beyond that, no comparison.

  • Alex Kozora

    He didn’t. Played on tag, then got new deal this February after getting tagged again.

  • Ed Smith

    If rumors that offer was in the $12+mm/yr average over contract, then what does Mr. Bell believe is a reasonable representation of his value? To me he’s not thinking straight. Wait isn’t that an indicator of…

  • Marcel Chris Chauvet

    Sounds like a guy whose agent wss telling him that he could deliver on a number that wasn’t particularly close to what he could really get. If you pay attention to the tone of the commentary, Bell sounds really upset. As if he were supremely optimistic the Steelers were gonna reshape the value at his position. Most people agreed from word go that this would be a tough negotiation. Doesn’t make sense he was felt so certain that this deal would get done.

  • Jeff McNeill

    I think his per year value is at it max right now and another year of use devalues him. He’s taking a chance and I think this season will be the most he ever makes and they will let him test the market next year. They will then either match what is offered or let him walk and take a comp pick in return.

  • RevDrEBuzz

    He is always told he is the best RB in the league. If that’s the case, he does deserve to be paid as such.

  • nutty32

    At least you guys were pretty much spot on with your draft picks predictions

  • Charles Mullins

    … History says he is going to get hurt this year…. he should have signed the deal. He is most likely not going to have any leverage at the end of the year.

  • Charles Mullins

    12mil is 30% more than 8mil. Not sure what point your trying to make. If 12mil is true then it was more than fair for a guy who hasn’t proven that he can make it to the playoffs and stay healthy.

  • AndyR34

    12+ mil per year is 50% more than the next highest paid RB. I would say that is paying him as such!

  • Michael Conrad

    Four years and four injures and 18 games played in the last two and unavailable for the playoffs. I say he received a fair offer. He is a RB and part of the job description is catching passes..

    The shelf life is about seven years on a RB after that its down hill. He has two more good years at best so he and the Steelers both win, Bell gets 12 million tag.

    The Steelers were willing to pay him 12 million in a contract and lets see if he makes it through this season healthy. He when healthy is a joy to watch.

  • WreckIess

    I doubt that. The point of drafting James Conner was to stop doing that type of thing.

  • Steve

    Wouldn’t be surprised to see Bell come in late and Conner Start. Bell is acting all hurt and upset, when he needs to listen to AB and if he wants this Big contract and be the best he can be.

  • Steve

    Exactly – Conner will take Bells job.

  • Steve Johnson

    I’m starting to get tired of Mr. Bell.

  • Steve Johnson

    Brown has never been suspended for violating the League’s substance abuse policy. Brown has proven to be quite durable, he has never been suspended either. LeVeon Bell needs to stop trying to be a Crusader for the rest of the RB’s in the league.

  • WreckIess

    I didn’t say all that. Bell is the unquestioned starter and Conner is the spell RB.

  • Steve Johnson

    12M? Hmm! Let his A$$ walk. 9-10M is generous enough.

  • Steve Johnson

    If they offered him 12M, you don’t think that was generous enough? Even if it was 10M, that’s nearly 2M more than the highest paid RB. This is the Pittsburgh Steelers, Mr. Dan Rooney, not Mr. Snyder and the Redskins.

  • Steve Johnson

    Or a guy that can stay away from the drugs.

  • Steve

    Never know. If Conner come in and does well, Bell maybe sitting.

  • pittsburghjoe

    I would love to see James Connor exceed expectations and eat Bell’s lunch in 2018.

  • MC

    Best running back in the league imo but he comes across as really immature to me and all about money. I understand wanting to get paid for your body taking a toll but 12 million is more than enough for someone who hasn’t lasted a full season – injuries aren’t his fault, but missed drug tests and smoking blunts with Blount is entirely. Had the latter occurrences hadn’t happened I would be as frustrated as him that he wasn’t signed.
    Would love to see Connor make him expendable but I doubt that will happen unfortunately.

  • Flip Fisher

    LOL, what? We are going to forget about Bell for a third round talent? Guess he did have 30 catches over 4 years. He did crack the top 50 for rushing yards last season in college. Just a mere 1k yards behind Pumphrey.

  • ND_Steel

    Franchise Tag = Franchise Player…show some leadership and get to camp.

  • ND_Steel

    How so? (does he devalue himself after 27 July)

  • RickM

    He won’t feel any need to be a leader when they couldn’t agree to a long-term contract and slapped a temporary tag on him. He’s going to call his own shots and he’ll arrive later, guaranteed.

  • walter

    Im wondering if the Steelers could save money in 2018 designating him with the non-exclusive franchise tag. Could it be different than averaging the top 5 salaries?

  • Jeff McNeill

    No it just allows other teams to sign him and give the Steelers 2 first round picks as compensation. The transition tag is the top 10 average but allows teams to sign him with no compensation.

  • Steelers12

    Lol dude no

  • Flip Fisher

    What does getting tagged have to do with being a leader? Ben shows enough leadership for the team as it is.

  • jsteeler

    who cares.

  • jsteeler

    Never happen.
    Why are you day dreaming?
    Sad

  • jsteeler

    Never happened.
    Bell is not only the Best RB in the NFL but is also a Face of the NFL.
    No one can do what he does. He has single handedly changed the RB position.

  • jsteeler

    Many franchise players are not Leaders. They are Franchised for a reason. Leaders get Valued deals. IE: Antonio Brown.

  • jsteeler

    Ben is not a leader. Maybe an above average QB barely.

  • NinjaMountie

    Bell is arguably the best RB, or more precisely, the best all around RB. However, he isn’t the face of the NFL. I just don’t see that. Also, plenty have done what he’s done. He may be an extremely patient runner but I don’t see how he’s single handedly changed the NFL. Forte has been running and receiving for years. Faulk did it. Johnson outperformed him this year.
    Again, great RB, arguably the best in the league right now, but lets not overstate.

  • Chris Ellis

    We celebrate (multi-millinoaire) owners and GM’s for making shrewd decisions in the best interest of the team, but we’re offended when a player does the same thing for himself? Isn’t that a little backwards? Le’veon knows RB’s have a short life-span in the NFL and he has all of the leverage – doesn’t it make sense for him to wait for a contract that he feels he’s worth?

  • NinjaMountie

    How do you feel he has all of the leverage? He obviously didn’t as they didn’t pay him. No player, let alone a RB with injury issues, wants to play on a one year contract. Another injury could end his career, at the least it will severely impact his value next season. This is a gamble by him, no way around that. The Steelers could, if desired, put a tag on him again next season. Personally, I don’t see that happening.

  • Chris Ellis

    He said 15m a year in a rap song. We have no idea what the Steelers offered him or what he’s asking for. He has every right to hold out for a contract that pays him what he thinks he’s worth.

  • Chris Ellis

    He didn’t sign for a reason. Clearly he (and his agents, who know a hell of a lot more about the market then we do) thinks another team will pay him more than the Steelers were offering. It may be a gamble, but none of us know how much since we don’t know how much the Steelers offered. Assuming they offered this much or that much is just that – an assumption. He’s not wrong when he says RB’s are undervalued.

  • Chris Ellis

    Dude, its about the money for everyone in the NFL, not just the players. The owners are making truck loads of money on the backs of the players, where’s you’re outrage for them?

  • Chris Ellis

    Do you have a link with that rumor? Legitimately curious.

  • Chris Ellis

    And what if they didn’t offer him 12 mil? What if they only offered him 10? Or 8? Until you know for sure you don’t have a point, either. And for the record, Le’Veon may have been hurt in the AFC Championship game but there was absolutely no way the Steelers win 11 games or make it as far as they did without him destorying opposing defenses.

  • Chris Ellis

    Cool story, bro.

  • Chris Ellis

    They offered him a 1 yr/12 mil contract, which he is going to accept. What immaturity are you speaking of?

  • Chris Ellis

    1 year deal, dude. They weren’t negotiating how much the franchise tag was worth, they were negotioating a long term deal. And none of us know how much they offered him.

  • Chris Ellis

    And in this fairy tale world Connor becomes the best RB in the league and we’re in this exact same spot 3-4 years from now. But hey, I’m sure the Steelers can just keep drafting the future best RB every couple of years and it’ll all be good.

  • NinjaMountie

    I see your point about him and his agent wanting more money. We’ll have to wait and see if a team pays him. Remember a few years ago when Murray got a big contract (5yrs 40mill) and he had a rough season and got cut and signed the Titans the next year at 4 years for 25 million. That’s quite a big pay cut. It’s a “what did you do now” league. Do you think that hasn’t entered Bell’s mind? He’d be silly if it didn’t.
    As far as the undervalued thing. Teams set the value and is what it is.

  • Michael Mosgrove

    Me me me. That’s what bell is not the team.

  • NinjaMountie

    LOL..doesn’t appear the Steelers are going to go the route of the Redskins and release a statement about what they offered him. That Washington team is messed up. I don’t blame Cousins for wanting out and not liking it there.

  • NinjaMountie

    Honestly and seriously, do you really blame him? He’s looking out for him and his….like it should be. Is it annoying as a fan? Sure! Would I do any different? Nope…not at all.
    Now, that being said, his idea of what he’s worth may be more than mine. Example, if I were offered 12 mill a year as is the rumor, I would have taken it. That’s a big reset of the RB market.

  • Chris Ellis

    Couple of things:

    Demarco Murray was drafted in 2011. In 2014 he had 392(!) carries and led the league in rushing. Dallas offered him around 6 mil/year – he declined and ultimately signed in Philly for 5 yrs/42 mil (21 guaranteed). You’re right that he underwhelmed and ultimately ended up in Tennessee on a 4 yr/25.5 mil contract (12 mil guaranteed). That’s right at what Dallas offered him the previous year.

    There’s a ton of articles about the curse of 370, but essentially once you hit that amount of carries history says you’re bound to decline statistically the next year. Dallas knew that and offered him a contract they deemed appropriate. Another team offered him substantially more. Murray was right to bet on himself. And even after a crappy year he STILL ended up with a contract around what Dallas was offering previously. As for Dallas, they tried a RB by committee the next year and, while decent, weren’t at the same level they were with Murray. They ended up spending a top 5 pick on a RB in 2016 – the jury is still out on that one.

    Look at the RB market in 2013 (when Bell was drafted): it was all about RB by committee and drafting RB’s in the later rounds. Since then we’ve had multiple RB’s drafted in the first round. You could argue that’s due to how good Bell has been. RB’s absolutely have more value in 2017 then they did 2-3 years ago. Bell knows that, which is why he’s looking for a larger contract.

    This is a long way of saying Bell is probably right that there’s team out there willing to pay him A LOT of money for his services. Calling him greedy and immature etc. for trying to maximize his earning potential while he still can is silly. What he’s doing is smart business.

  • NinjaMountie

    I’m only calling him silly if he indeed turned down 12 mill a year as reported. I don’t know if that’s true, though. I think he should try and maximize his earnings. However, he’s an oft injured RB that’s getting older. Not questioning his signing a long term contract is silly. His gamble may pay off but, in all honesty, the odds aren’t on his side. He’s got a lot of wear on his tread as well…with injuries. Do I think he has a couple of years left? Yup…a couple. He just put one of those in a one year contract. Gamble.
    Is there a team willing to overpay him….maybe. I don’t think there is a team that’s going to offer him any more than 12 a year. So, if the Steelers did offer him that and the hangup was guaranteed money, then he was indeed silly to not take it because he gambled on a year with no guarantees to end up with the same contract next year. Again….Speculation as we don’t know for certain what the offer truly was. Just like you don’t know for certain that Bell wasn’t being totally unreasonable in his demands.

  • Chris Ellis

    None of us know what he was offered, and that honestly isn’t the point. He and his agents thought he was worth more than what the Steelers offered him. He’s probably right – there’s a long history of players who are elite at their position getting mega-paid by another team. Not to mention RB’s are worth more in 2017 than they were 2-3 years ago.

    How do you figure “a lot of wear”? He’s played 47 games in 4 years. He’s 26, not 36. Injuries are a bit of a concern but you could say that about a lot of players in the league.

    Contracts are non-guaranteed in the NFL, guaranteed money is THE most important thing in contract negotiations. We also have no idea what the Steelers will offer him next year but we do know the Franchise Tag would be around 14.5 mil next year which is indeed more than this year.

    Look, if the argument is the Steelers are better off using the money it would take to sign Bell elsewhere on the roster, thats a debate I’m willing to have. Or maybe you want to argue that the risk (injury, off field concerns, etc) is too great to sign Bell to a long term contract. I’d disagree but the concerns are valid. But to people who want to call Bell greedy, or immature, or stupid for thinking he’s worth more than 8 mil/year don’t have a leg to stand on.

  • Michael James

    Lol, no chance at all. Bell is a transcendent talent, the best RB in the league, a game-changer. You don’t sit him for a third-round rookie.

  • ND_Steel

    Totally agree, I would have a problem with this as an organization.

  • SilverSteel

    Oh and this just in. On ESPN last night, Bell said he would not be doing his usual rigorous training because of “longevity” issues. Sounds to me like he’s not planning on giving 100% this year. Hmm.

  • SilverSteel

    The leaks say over 12 mil per yr. I believe that. It’s the guaranteed money that was the sticking point.

  • SilverSteel

    The not training as hard comment really is a poke in the eye to the org. Wow. I read that too.

  • SilverSteel

    He has a right. That’s true but if he really was offered over 12 for five yrs, that’s fair especially considering his past.

  • SilverSteel

    Bell said he wasn’t going to train as hard this year because of this. Meaning were not getting his all this year. That should tell you volumes about his character. Should have took the coin. He’s starting to sound like a cancer. Maybe his agent has poisoned the well. I was rooting for him right up to the point where he said he won’t give his all in a SB run year.

  • PompeyGoat

    Can’t see anyone giving up 2 first round picks for a 27 year old RB even if he is the best. Would that reset the franchise amount or would it still be 120% of this year?
    Hypothetically wouldn’t the franchise amount have been much less for 2018 than 2017?

  • Michael Mosgrove

    Difference of opinion. I would do it differently.

  • NinjaMountie

    I’ve voiced all the concerns you’ve mentioned.
    Also, I’ll say it again, he has a lot of wear on his tires. A pretty good article was written on this site about it not too long ago. I don’t remember who wrote it but you could search through articles tagged Bell if you’re interested in reading it.
    And again, Bell, you, nor myself get to determine what the value of a position is. We can speculate and voice our opinion but our opinions don’t matter. The consensus of the team’s have set the actual value and it is what it is.
    You fall on the side of Bell thinking he made a good decision. I fall on the side of the team thinking they made him a fair offer. Truth is neither one of us have enough information to know for sure so the silliest thing of all this is that we’re arguing about it, lol.
    Anyway, I’m sure we can both agree that we hope he shows up, has a great year, and that the Steelers have a great season. We’ll see what happens with Bell next season.

  • Steel Realist PAul

    Yeah, many others can say the same, but I’m not at all surprised that Bell didn’t sign. His lyrics were saying all along how he NEEDS to be the highest paid player, and that doesn’t mean RB.

  • John Pennington

    Just sign the tag and move on nothing can be done now until after the season theres a championship to be won and everyone needs to be on board plus the young guys could use your help.Be bigger than this and to camp on time.Everything to gain and alot to lose by not being there.Called Respect.

  • StolenUpVotes

    Well that is just false

  • rdjmsr53

    I can’t blame him for wanting more. To me it looked like it he was the leader on offensive. The Steelers pay Ben and Brown around 18m a year. Bell has over 25 touches a game. Just simple math says he should be paid more then Brown and maybe Ben. If and when he reports the Steelers will run his wheels off, just like they did last year. Ben will complain that some lower draft choice receivers need to step up to open up space for AB. AB will pout that he doesn’t get the ball enough.
    I think the best case scenario is Bell holds out till the bye week. Then he won’t be all beat up come playoff time. The question is can the Steelers win a #1 or #2 seed without him early on?
    If the Steelers would happen to win a Super Bowl, I can see both Bell and Ben leaving. Cousins could be are next QB.

  • Zarbor

    So lets get this straight. Steelers are going to franchise Bell making him the highest paid RB and they will sit him because Conner does well. That is some seriously strong stuff you smoking.

  • NCSteel

    You must be joking.

  • Beaver Falls Hosiery

    By not showing up; he will not be working with the team; the longer he stays away; the more game planning without him; the less he is involved in helping the team have a successful season; the less he will be valued.

  • Zarbor

    Bell is more than right that there is a team that is more than willing to pay him A LOT of money for his services. Those teams usually don’t win SBs much less make it to one. So let him go right ahead. I will never call a guy as talented as Bell greedy. I did call Mr. One Trick pony Mike Wallace greedy because he was all about the money and he was not that talented. Many in the Nation believe he was and he should have been paid the money. Not to mention playing with Ben made Wallace career. He hasn’t even come close to that kind of success since.

    This is where folks like you and Bell thinking or listening to his agent is flawed. It can never just be about what you think you are worth, that’s selfish and narrow minded. Bell can get that money he wants from somebody but will it be with a team that has one of the best o-line? One of the best QBs? Probably the best receiving corp in the league. These are crucial things that he had nothing to do with that contributed GREATLY to Bell’s success. The team built that and not easily. Folks actually think he can do what he does anywhere…Really? You folks do realize that not all systems work well for all players. Ask Murray when he went to Philly.

    I’ve been a Bell fan since college at MS. I’m on the edge and about to get off the wagon real soon. Why? I never liked it but it appears appropriate for giving him the nickname “Juice.” He clearly seems to be sipping his own and there are a few signs I just don’t like that has led me to that conclusion.

    1. I initially chalked it up as nothing but him rapping about what he think he was worth is now a concern. Looks like that chicken may be coming home to roost.

    2. His statement about “we would have won the Pats game if he was playing” seemed like nothing but now looking at it, he may believe we can’t win without him. Juiced.

    3. Not showing up at OTAs didn’t seem like much but Ben was right. Injured or no injured, a team guy shows up. A leader shows up especially during a contract year.

    4. Now he’s saying that he is trying to raise the market value for RBs in the league. Really? I’m pretty sure what the Steelers offered him has raised that market but not to his liking.

    5. Lastly, taking his time to sign the franchise deal is his choice but lets see how long it takes and if he sits out for a deal. Steelers ain’t KC or any other team. No camp. No deal.

    What’s most disappointing about Bell is to see how AB went about getting his deal. For people to compare his money with Bell is silly. What AB has done for this team when he did not have a big contract, the way he has gone about it proving he is all in on the Steelers and showed up to OTAs, camp not grumbling nor trying to make a statement is why you pay that man. Barry Sanders was and is in my book the greatest RB I’ve ever seen. No rings, no Superbowls. Phenomenal stats. We can say alot about the Steelers but they are most times than not fair in what they do with their best players especially in their prime. They must however be team guy. Starting to question is LeVeon is one of those or not.

  • D.j. Reynolds

    Conner < Bell. However, Conner is the cheap potential Bell insurance.

  • D.j. Reynolds

    Let’s see how Bell plays this. If he wants to be a Steeler long-term, he must take a lesson from AB – don’t holdout and show some trust in the team/FO (especially given their patience with his issues in the past).

    If he holds out, I would be willing to bet he won’t be a Steeler after 2018 season (if he even gets 2018)!

  • walter

    Wiki says the exclusive is the average of the top five salaries but the non-exclusive is the average of the top five cap hits at the player’s position. Are you sure there is no difference? Just curious as nobody has mentioned it.

  • Jeff McNeill

    This is from the cba,
    Nonexclusive Franchise Tender. The Nonexclusive Franchise Tender shall be a one year NFL Player Contract for (A) the average of the five largest Prior Year Salaries for players at the position
    There is a lot more I would link it but the site does not allow for that, but if you google cba franchise tag it will come up.

  • MC

    Dodging drug tests, smoking weed in cars, hitting up instagram models just after the birth of his daughter with long term partner.

  • walter

    I havent read it yet but I will thanks. So Wiki is wrong?

  • walter

    I just read it page 44 and the exclusive and non-exclusive formulas are different. Its complicated so I will need a few minutes to study it.

    “….which average shall be calculated by: (1) summing the amounts of the Franchise
    Tags for players at that position for the five preceding League Years; (2) dividing the
    resulting amount by the sum of the Salary Caps for the five preceding League Years…”
    there is a lot more lol

    But since Dave is the Salary Cap genius, he must have already considered this.

  • walter

    That doesnt sound good at all.

  • walter

    Ben is the leader. It sure as heck not MB and at this point, its not Bell either. I guess you dont remember the Malone years or Bubby Brister

  • walter

    It would be cool to see Conner start and Bell play later just to send a message about not showing up in camp. No one player will hold the team hostage.

  • walter

    He may not have really meant it. Like when Ben said he might retire. But the hold out is concerning.

  • Steve

    Zabor – Don’t usually read a post that is more than a page long but did read yours and it does make sense. 12 mil is a lot of money, that people can live on the rest of their lives if they use it right. Last year I didn’t believe Bell was hurt in the Pats game. Just looked all too fake. Think he was hurt prior to the Pats, but decided to Wimp it out and sit out, when he could have played, if he wanted to. We could have played in the Superbowl and Beat the Pats. But Mr Bell and DWill were both hurt. After that we were one dimensional and the Pats knew we could only Pass. Pretty much ignoring the run.

  • Steve

    Yes, you will see. Just watch.

  • Steve

    Have never celebrated on an Owner or GM for doing nothing. Was pissed off that Bell sat out against the Pats, because I don’t think he got hurt in that game. He just took the easy way out and sat. Making the Steelers one dimensional. Have always been a Team first person and no person on that team is above them.

  • Steve

    Are you a friend of Mr Bell? This profile you got was just made. Ninja and I have came here for years. I know a troll when I see one, and your it. Pictures like yours can be anyone’s picture. Please stop the BS.

  • Steve

    Chris Ellis is a troll. Probably a friend of Bells. That picture can be anyone – Beware.

  • Steve

    How do you say “Its about the money for everyone in the NFL”? Tom Brady took a PAY CUT. To play with the Pats, so they could pay other players. Some Players wish they could play for an organization like the Steelers, but instead play for teams like Cleveland, that win one game the whole year. Come forth TROLL. You are NOT the person in the picture.

  • Steve

    He has got hurt or suspended every year so far, so the Magic Ball says your correct.

  • Steve

    Cowboys did that with Tony Romo last year. Romo was not ready at the start. So Dak started and Romo never played again. Romo sat on the bench making 12 mil. Dak was a Rookie 4th rounder making peanuts.

  • Steve

    We will see. No player, no matter how good they are, is above the TEAM. Don’t care who they are or what position they play.

  • Steve

    Read what I said about the Crygirls above.

  • Zarbor

    First off, a completely different scenario. Tony was injured, bruised, battered and much older. If not for all of the above, we would not have heard about Dak last year. Tony would not have been sitting if healthy which will be the case with Bell. Terrible comparison. Please don’t use the Cowboys as an example of anything besides being dysfunctional. LOL

  • Zarbor

    Sorry for the wall of text. I try not to be that long but had to given the situation with Bell

  • Michael James

    That’s absolutely right. But it would be foolish to sit the best RB in the game while he’s still available, just to make a statement.

  • Chris Ellis

    Boy, I wish I had NFL friends. Unfortunately I’m just a lowly beer rep in Colorado. The profile was NOT just made, its a Facebook profile I’ve had active for about 16 years. You’re cute for suggesting that, though.

  • Chris Ellis

    Here’s my point: Owners and GMs have a responsibility to put their team’s in the best position to win football games. All players want to win championships, but ultimately football is a job. It is NOT their job to take pay cuts in a league that does 10 billion in revenue every year. If Le’Veon thinks the RB market is that depressed than its smart business to wait for a better deal.

    What has Bell done to make you think he was faking being hurt in the Championship game? Just because the Steelers lost? Has he ever given you the impression that he wasn’t working as hard if not harder than anyone on the team?

  • Chris Ellis

    Do you have the link where he said he wouldn’t train as hard? I know he mentioned he might skip camp but maybe I missed it? I’m defending him but if he said something that stupid than I’d have to rethink my position.

  • Chris Ellis

    You’re absolutely right – we’re just agreeing to disagree. I’m not trying to “troll” anyone, its just hard watching a guys character come into question during contract negotioations. This current team is super talented and all of us want to see a great year from Bell and the Steelers.

  • Steve

    Have watched the Pats game numerous times and could not see where Bell got hurt. Bell was not even limping after coming out. Just had this grin on his face coming to the sidelines. After that it was strait downhill for the Steelers. Yes,, Bell has screwed up smoking weed in the car, getting pulled over by the cops. Then suspended. Bell is making 4 million dollars more than the next highest paid running back in the league. Or will be making 12 mil when he signs the contract. The dude is still not happy. Well don’t sign the contract and go somewhere else like M Lynch did.

  • SilverSteel

    It was on an espn article. I will try to find it.

  • Chris Ellis

    Just becuase you don’t see an injury happen doesn’t mean it didn’t happen. Teammates and coaches supported him after the game. You’re also proving Bell’s point about being valuable to the Steelers – they cratered offensively when he left the game. Him making 4 mil more than the next highest paid RB says more about how underappreciated RBs are than anything.

  • SilverSteel

    The espn story is is the one that has “I want to be valued” in the title. About half way down he says he won’t be able to train as hard because of “longevity”. I think that was a swipe at the Steelers org, and I thought sounded like pouting. IMO