Steelers Activate RB Le’Veon Bell, Release LB Steven Johnson

As expected, the Pittsburgh Steelers activated running back Le’Veon Bell to the 53-man roster on Saturday and he is now eligible to play in the regular season opener against the Cleveland Browns.

In order to make room for Bell on the Steelers 53-man roster , linebacker Steven Johnson was released.

Bell, who missed all of training camp and the preseason this year, is expected to get his normal playing time and workload Sunday against the Browns.

The Steelers former second-round draft pick out of Michigan State decided to stay away from the team most of the offseason after receiving the franchise tag ahead of the start of the new league year in March. He conducted his offseason training in South Florida and didn’t sign his franchise tender until a week ago.

The Steelers asked for and received a two-week roster exemption for Bell upon his return to the team.

  • francesco

    Watch the Patriots pick him up?!

  • John Noh

    Damn, I hope that cup of coffee was hot and tasty, at least.

  • WreckIess

    Really makes you wonder why the hell we even brought him back in the first place..

  • Steve Johnson

    You could be right, they lost their MLB last Thursday night.

  • Steve Johnson

    And Brian Allen survives again.

  • nutty32

    strong user name to post content ratio.

  • The Sun is Pro-Black

    He’s not going anywhere.

  • Michael James

    Hightower is only out for one week and even that is not certain, rumors say he might even play next week.

  • Rob H

    As some of us have been trying to explain the common sense of for a while now.

  • Steel Realist PAul

    Bell’s talent is unmatched, for the most part. Still, I sincerely hope we see much more second RB snaps to get Conner ready.

  • MintDragon

    Steelers have a nod-and-wink agreement. They’ve done this in the past by cutting a vet, letting him know he’ll be back in a week or two. Gentleman’s agreement for him not to accept another team’s offer, and he becomes a human yo-yo when needed to keep under head count or cap.

  • JT

    Well I was way wrong. But I guess they feel safe dangling him out there until they need him. But why on Earth was he getting 1st team ST reps this week? Doesn’t make much sense.

  • Michael Conrad

    He gets a pay check for the week and he knew if no injuries he would be gone. A nice move by the Steelers.

  • Jaybird

    Let them . He is a below average NFL starter. I hope they take all our below average players and everyone else’s and make them into starters. Then we can beat the sh*t out of them because their roster sucks. Not every player that New England picks up becomes an All Pro.

  • NW86

    Exactly, this was simply a favor to him so he got a paycheck this week. Not many teams out there would do that.

  • Jaybird

    No way. The Steelers just made a ton of moves to win NOW. They aren’t keeping people on the roster just to be nice. This is a top notch football franchise trying to win a championship while they still have their franchise QB. Every guy on this roster is here for a reason, no hand outs or favors. The Steelers are the best as far as treating their players , but they ain’t stupid. Every spot is valuable and they would never waste one just to give a guy an extra paycheck.

  • Kevin artis

    Why not they already have Ayers.

  • MP

    Really thought it would be Allen.

  • Kevin artis

    I’m worried about his “football shape”. Hamstring, groin are areas of concern after no OTAs, training camp and preseason.
    Does anyone remember when he came back from his suspension, he fumbled but I think we recovered.
    He hasn’t been hit since the AFCCG and then he wasn’t in very long.

  • Matt Manzo

    1 point for me!!!

  • NW86

    So what’s your explanation then? How did delaying Bell’s signing so they could get a 54th spot, signing Johnson for 2 days, knowing they weren’t keeping him, help them win tomorrow’s football game?

    I’m not saying it couldn’t benefit the Steelers in the long run – of course it benefits an employer to treat their employees well. It’s always best to make people want to work for you. Johnson will stay motivated to keep in shape and be ready in case they have an injury and do need him back.

  • Steve Johnson

    lol

  • Jaybird

    I obviously don’t know the exact reason why they brought him back , only to be waived again. I’m hoping that this made them a better team for the TWO days he was here! lol.
    It was strange I agree, in fact on the Friday night five , I said I hoped they would cut Johnson but I said I didn’t think they would. I went with Mcculeers instead. I out thought myself!

  • Steve Johnson

    I hope not; I hope by mid season they are using him in their dime defense to help defend the TE’s.

  • VaDave

    Btw, if you are “The” Steve Johnson, we wish you well.

  • michael young

    Exactly this. He may be raw, but he’s big, strong and fast and you need those attributes to match up with the Gronks, Kelce’s and Eiferts of the league. As long as he can get up to speed on the playbook and his technique, he could be a huge asset for us. We shall see.

  • Michael Mosgrove

    why sign johnson to cut him? feiler makes more sense to trade away.

  • Michael Mosgrove

    and me.

  • Michael Mosgrove

    i doubt that. if anyone will be used midseason i think itll be cam sutton.

  • Joseph Shaw

    Steve Johnson is here…everybody, look busy…

  • Jake Marion

    Steelers’ front office is playing roster hokey-pokey with Steven Johnson.

  • LucasY59

    maybe they trade Feiler sometime before the trade deadline?

  • LucasY59

    and that is a good thing

  • LucasY59

    Im guessing SJ was an extra practice body? not entirely sure why they brought him back after initial cuts just to drop him again, but I guess they had the extra spot so they thought he would be useful?

  • StolenUpVotes

    Or maybe they think he can push finney once Ramon hangs them up

  • StrengthOfVictory

    His whole training in Florida was all about mobility/agility/conditioning drills. You can watch the videos on Youtube. I wouldn’t worry about him pulling anything. If anything, he might be a little more gassed after ripping off a few big runs at “game speed,” but I wouldn’t be too concerned.

  • NCSteel

    Right on

  • Rotten Sircus

    I see that happening !!!

  • capehouse

    Kinda figured it’d be Johnson or Moats. McCullers still on the roster? Oh my! What will the haters say now?

  • Kevin Schwartz

    One reason why I’ve never worried about Bell’s attitude, despite the suspensions, is that all accounts appear that he’s an extremely hard worker. I buy the explanation that he stayed away from training camp because he didn’t want to risk injury while on a one-year contract. He might not be in ideal shape, but I think he’ll be pretty close to ready.

  • Michael Mosgrove

    yeahhhh i dont see that happening.

  • Pghomer

    Dave, Thank you for referring to him as Steven and not Stevie Johnson Wasn’t Stevie Johnson the well traveled WR a few years back? Sorry … but am I wrong…is he referred to as both Stevie and Steven. Had to get that off my chest….

  • Gautama Om

    They already have Ayers. They are not going to pick Johnson up just to pick his brains on the ins and outs of the Steelers, especially when he’s not starting material. Besides they already just extended Van Noy to be the ILB next to Hightower.

  • Steve

    With you on this one. Steelers Achelichiles heel has been the DB spot and this is where they need as much help as they can get. The LB spot has been strong, this is where they can afford to loose a player.

  • Steve

    In the game the other night, Kelce took some cheap shots, which did not impress me. This cost KC some yardage in penalty, which could be costly, but not vrs NE.

  • Steve

    Not just Conner but Watson also, to keep the backs fresh and healthy. Watson would be a nice short yardage RB, with him being able to catch the ball and pounding the ball up the gut.

  • Steve

    Many will tell you there is no substitute for “football shape” and it’s can’t be duplicated.

  • Conserv_58

    When Alex posed the question whom do we think will be sacrificed once Bell is activated, I called it.

  • Conserv_58

    So what? What has Johnson ever done other than play ST’s to justify keeping a roster spot?

  • Conserv_58

    I called it too.

  • Conserv_58

    They cut him because it makes more sense than to cut someone like Feiler. Johnson only played ST’s, but since he’s way down the line in the LB pecking order he was expendable. Secondly, with this possibly being Ben’s last season along with the team being in an all-in mode it makes good sense for them to keep an extra offensive lineman just in case of injuries to the starters. The ultimate goal is to win the SB and given that they need to keep Ben upright to accomplish that goal it goes without saying that Johnson loses out to Feiler.

  • Conserv_58

    They really like Finney.

  • Conserv_58

    That especially involves getting used to being hit and Bell hasn’t been hit yet. The Steelers use live tackling in camp so as to get the players mentally and physically acclimated and conditioned to what is going to happen once the season starts.

  • Conserv_58

    I expected him to because the Steelers know that he wouldn’t pass wavers if they cut him.

  • Conserv_58

    Yeah well, Sutton has to prove he can stay on the field first.

  • Conserv_58

    Why the surprise that Kelce took some cheap shots? Have you ever seen an interview with him? He leaves no doubt that he’s an immature, hot headed idiot. I’m fully expecting to see him get ejected from a game this season because he can barely control his temper.

  • Conserv_58

    His only value is as a decent ST’s player. He was too far down the line as a LB to justify keeping him on the roster over anyone else.

  • Conserv_58

    Then again, there’s a reason why those players are treated like yo-yo’s.

  • Conserv_58

    Ayers has tape proving he’s worth investing in. Johnson doesn’t, other than ST’s play.

  • Conserv_58

    He had a slight maniscus tear. I’m not sure how long it takes for that to heal.

  • Kevin artis

    They already lost their MLB and you know how NE is, they take minor players and they contribute when they get there

  • Steve

    No where do I say “Surprised”, which is a Big difference from not being impressed. Kelce is a Hot head and coach better get him settled before he is ejected.

  • Steve

    All teams hit in camp, that’s what they do and why they are there. Bell better be ready because his bell is going to be rung.

  • Michael Mosgrove

    fair enough.

  • Michael Mosgrove

    hmmm.

  • Av232

    Doesn’t heal on its own. You wait for swelling to go down and see where your range of motion is at and live with it, or you get your knee scoped and trim out the tear.

  • francesco

    Ayers ins and outs on offense.
    Johnson ins and outs on defense.

  • StolenUpVotes

    Neither do I. I really like Finney, but you never know

  • StolenUpVotes

    As they should