The Steelers don’t have many reasons to trust Le’Veon Bell at the moment, argues Jeremy Fowler of ESPN.com, and it’s possible that sentiment infects contract talks with the pending free agent. Earlier this week, Bell saw his suspension reduced from four games to three, but that doesn’t excuse the missed drug tests, DUI, and marijuana busts, as Fowler writes, adding that Pittsburgh “probably won’t know what to expect from him off the field until he proves it over time.” On the flip side, the Steelers laud Bell for his work ethic and his interactions with fans, so he’s clearly not a character problem in the traditional sense of the term. How exactly Pittsburgh views Bell and his off-field questions could affect his future with the club and any negotiations the two sides might have over the next seven months or so.
More from the Steel City:
- Tight end Ladarius Green went on the record to deny that he’s been dealing with headache issues, and once again reiterated that it’s an ankle injury that’s been keeping him on the PUP list and off the field. Reports have indicated that Green is suffering from the aftereffects of multiple concussions, and has even contemplated retirement, another storyline that Green challenged. “I am wondering who said this,” Green told Mark Kaboly of the Pittsburgh Tribune. “I don’t think I spoke about retiring no time soon. I am only 26 so I don’t think I am retiring anytime soon.”
- Though Bruce Gradkowski could be sidelined for some time after tearing his hamstring, the Steelers figure to stand pat with Landry Jones as their backup quarterback, writes Fowler in a separate piece. Jones was solid during training camp, and as Fowler adds, the veteran QB market is extremely thin. Pittsburgh did sign Bryn Renner earlier today, but that was primarily a reaction to third-stringer Dustin Vaughan suffering a broken thumb, tweets Kaboly.
- Last week, veteran linebacker James Harrison — along with Packers Clay Matthews and Julius Peppers — agreed to future interviews with the NFL about an ongoing PED investigation. Harrison went on to blast Roger Goodell, referring to the commissioner as a “crook” and saying he’d like to have the interviews televised.