Latest On Steelers, Le’Veon Bell

The Le’Veon Bell saga with the Steelers has been seemingly going on forever now, and there’s still no end in sight to the drama. Another big fight between the two sides is brewing, according to Jeremy Fowler of

The latest reports have Pittsburgh likely to place the transition tag on Bell, and Fowler writes that “several NFL sources paint the transition tag as the Steelers’ risk-reward plight that could involve the NFLPA, the NFL management council and an independent arbitrator.” The transition tag is essentially a non-exclusive franchise tag that pays less than the regular tag and allows the player to negotiate with other teams but gives the tagging team the right to match any offer.

Fowler writes that a legal battle could be coming with potential involvement from the players’ union, over whether or not the year that Bell sat out counts as a tagged year. Normally Bell would be in line for a significant raise even under the transition tag if he was tagged for three straight years, but Fowler expects the Steelers to argue that his year-long absence resets things, and that he’s only due $9.5MM under the transition tag.

Fowler’s report also adds steam to the notion that Bell could return to the Steelers next year. Most have assumed the Steelers would only tag Bell with the intention of trading him, but it seems at the very least possible at this point that the two sides could mend their torn relationship. “There’s a faction of the Steelers organization that has a soft spot for Bell”, according to Fowler, who seems to think there’s a very real possibility Bell hasn’t played his last game as a Steeler.

Fowler also writes that it won’t be as easy as people have been saying for the team to tag and trade Bell. “Only Bell actually signing the transition tag can enable a trade, according to multiple people with direct knowledge of NFL contracts. By doing so, Bell would forfeit his rights and give the Steelers control of where he goes and how he gets there. That’s not happening with a player with the conviction to sit out a year”, Fowler opines.

Since the tag situation is messy and doesn’t guarantee the Steelers would get back any draft picks, the “cleanest way” to ensure draft compensation is “letting Bell walk to earn a compensatory pick for 2020”, according to Fowler. With the tagging period right around the corner, we should know a lot more soon. With Antonio Brown and the team reportedly softening their stances toward one another, it’s entirely plausible neither player ends up leaving the team after all this drama.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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55 comments on “Latest On Steelers, Le’Veon Bell

  1. dionls

    Leave it alone. Let him walk.
    I understand why, precedent . But I’m still tiring of it

    • yoyo137

      For real, they need to move on at this point. It’s becoming more of a distraction that they keep around to prove a point, then they turn around and let AB pull the same kind of stuff. They need to just move on as an organization and stop giving the time of day to these two guys.

      • dugdog83

        Steelers are the loser in the breakup. They got absolutely nothing for him. I say they do this for sure.

  2. bigjonliljon

    Good for the Steelers. I say he put the team in a bad spot last year in order to achieve personal gains. They should tag him. Since he didn’t play at all last year, it only makes sense that the year should not count for tag purposes

    • Senioreditor

      They drop players for personal gain everyday but you have no problem with that?

  3. Polish Hammer

    He showed them…left $$$$$ on the table and showed them the system works and he could be replaced at a fraction of the cost. If only Connor could’ve stayed healthy…

    • TheTruth12

      Holy crap people on here are stupid, I don’t know where you people get it into your head that replacing an all pro player is easy it’s the same thing with Ab and Juju. Ab and Bell are all pro players,at the top of their positions, Juju and Conner are good players they just aren’t all pro players yet. Conner did not come anywhere close to the production Bell put up especially in the passing game. But the Steelers sure showed him by proving they can’t make the playoffs without him!

      • bradthebluefish

        Steelers don’t need an All Pro RB to win. Just need a better president and better leadership.

        • TheTruth12

          They would’ve 100% made the playoffs with Bell at RB instead of Conner, they do need a better president and leadership the problem is their leader on the field is getting an extension he really shouldn’t get with the stuff he’s put them through the past couple off seasons.

          • Mack83

            You don’t know they would have made the playoffs. Stop saying things you can’t possibly know for sure. 99%? Sure, 100%? Nope. Can’t do it.

            Just stop.

            AB Is replaceable for his value. Connor proved that.

            • troll_smasher

              We know the team was worse without Bell, so how did Connor “proving” anything turnout? The team was in Worse shape than the year b4. That’s all that matters.

          • Rocket32

            @TheTruth12 So you think they should move on from Big Ben? Then what? They really have no viable alternative at QB currently on the roster.

      • Polish Hammer

        Holy crap you’re stupid as well. Connor did put up the same rushing numbers Bell did until he got hurt, which shows you the system works. With the salary cap in place you need to find better fits all around and if you can pay Connor a fraction of Bell’s price tag and supplement the passing game with those millions saved as well as spread the rest of the $$$$ around at other vital spots that’s how you win in this league. They were just fine until Connor got hurt, and Bell’s selfishness proved how much of a team guy he is, he and AB shouldn’t show their faces in that locker room again…

        • troll_smasher

          IF IF IF… who would think a guy that barely played last year could duplicate a 400 touch workload like Bell. Like the saying goes… “You get what you pay for” At least Bell and Wentz both have that Selfish trait in common.

          • Polish Hammer

            Yes, Wentz is the most selfish player in the NFL. Just hold your breath until he’s arrested and suspended for getting high and then holding out from a lucrative salary and sitting the season out just to spite the team…

            • troll_smasher

              Yet….unlike the Steelers, the Eagles soared when Mr I like to Play favorites got hurt, AGAIN. I guess it’s all coincidences.

              “He sat out just to spite the team” Nah, he sat out b/c he wasn’t about to be abused again w/o guaranteed $ he though he deserved. BUT… You know you’re losing when you make up scenarios.

              • TheTruth12

                THIS! Bell is gonna end up getting minimum 50M probably closer to 70 depending on the years. So why risk that to make 14.5M this year?

                • Polish Hammer

                  Play for that $16 million as a team player, win and make the playoffs and that next contract would be even bigger. Won’t make up that lost salary.

                  • TheTruth12

                    And if he got injured like Earl Thomas? Wouldn’t get nearly as much in FA. For him personally this was the right move.

                    • Polish Hammer

                      Ifs and buts, he could’ve gotten high in a Camaro and crashed, then not have those millions to fall back on…

                      • troll_smasher

                        The same guy that keeps saying “IF Connor hadn’t got hurt”.

                        Dude stick to your Philly disfunction and how teammates ratting out Wentz to reporters. Guys had at least six players as sources and front office personnel that spoke to him.

                          • troll_smasher

                            Still doesn’t change the fact that the “Golden Boy” has enemies on his own team. Need an attitude adjustment.

                            Guess we’re ALL cowards since there’s no way to prove how tough we are over the Internet. That includes you, Coward

                              • troll_smasher

                                Says the guy that’s got a negative comment for every Steelers article. Keep on projecting, Trick

                                • Polish Hammer

                                  Negative on every Steelers article? Wrong again jackass, kudos to the Steelers for standing their ground, and kudos to them for not letting the cancers spoil the system…

                                  • troll_smasher

                                    Just like I’m glad the Eagles players are standing their ground and calling Wentz out for being a Selfish Cancer. Again, plenty in common.

                                      • troll_smasher

                                        Reports don’t name sources, idiot. Doesn’t mean it not true. STAY TRIGGERED over Wentzy Pooh

                                        • Polish Hammer

                                          Without one named player there is absolutely no credibility considering so many players put their names out there to refute that claim. Coward!

      • Stillers12

        As if making the playoffs had anything to do with the RB position. Coaching has and always will be the problem until Tomlin is gone.

        Conner played his butt off, and when he got hurt, Samuel was running all over the place. we aren’t paying 15 mil for a RB. It would be the dumbest thing ever.

        and calling peiple stupid is a great way to get your point across.

  4. RockHauler

    Clearly Bell has left a bad taste in the mouths of the Steelers. This reeks as a ‘F’ you to him.
    As someone from the outside looking in at the Steelers, what is going on? First Bell gives them the finger, then AB does ore of the same, not to mention that the QB and HC have been at odds for a couple years now. There has to be a common denominator. HC? Front office? QB attitude? Only time will tell.

    • connfyoozed

      IMO as a longtime Steeler fan, it’s a combination of things, but one of the biggest is the difference between the late Dan Rooney owning the team versus now with Art Rooney II running things: Art does not command the same respect, and also seems to want to talk to the media a lot more than he should. Another issue is that Tomlin got too lax with his control of the locker room and with letting some players get away with too much, too long. Basically it’s a lot of problems that all came to a peak at the same time. The Bell and Brown sagas are two entirely different issues with 2 different personalities, but they spring from the same base issues.

      • troll_smasher

        You mentioned Rooney, Tomlin, Bell, Brown, But no Ben. Of course, he has nothing to with anything.

        Just in 2017/2018

        Retirement Saga EVERY year.

        Criticize Management for Rudolph

        Throws coaches under bus for play calling

        Throws Brown, Washington under bus in Denver game.

  5. troll_smasher

    Man… the Archie Bunkers are out in full affect already!

    The Steelers really showed Bell how easy it was to cheaply replace him by missing the playoffs.

    1st week of the season Conner Fumbles late in the game when Steelers are trying to run the clock out, leading to a TIE.

    Steelers last in the league run/pass ratio, Blowing late 4-5 late quarter leads due to lack of running game. MAN…. they really showed him.

    • emac22

      Sort of like how Bell showed the Steelers fans and players how to lose 14 million dollars in less than 12 months.

      • troll_smasher

        Yea… he showed them How he can afford to lose it and not come crawling back. Are You mad that you can’t leave your job like that and live the same life as him? I guess I missed those interviews where he’s out there begging for money to eat and live.

  6. Senioreditor

    I hope he signs within the division and runs for 250 yards against them in game 1.

    • Polish Hammer

      Or Mr. I didn’t know that you could get a DUI for being high continues to get high and does well in his first game back after suspension…

  7. slpdajab55

    Here we go again … another day of the Steelers saga … stand your ground Rooney … don’t be bullied by these overpaid athletes .. He should have never sat out a year. You don’t pass up money like that .. the average career length , especially for that position is small. I think he’s crazy for wasting a year of 10mil plus .. insane

    • Senioreditor

      He stood his ground right out of the playoffs last year…, maybe he can do it again for a top 10 pick this year. The Steelers use to be a respectable organization. Maybe the Rooney’s need to go?

      • captainchaos55

        Maybe … it’s still an ignorant move by Bell. He will never recoup that money. A year of his prime wasted. I don’t think the difference from Connor to Bell would have given them a Super Bowl. Or even a playoff win for that matter. When all is said and done when his career is over he will be less millions of dollars from what he could have had. That’s the price of an ego. That’s flat out ignorant.

  8. Guest617

    imagine camp opening with both brown and bell and a new contract for ben. lol!

  9. bucsfan

    All of this could have been avoided if 2 years ago the Steelers had used the non-exclusive franchise tag on Bell. Bell would have been able to go negotiate a contract with another team and see what he was worth, while the Steelers could either match the offer or let him walk and receive 2 first round picks as compensation. But, alas that didn’t happen.

    • grizzled sports vet

      Hindsight is 20/20. I’m sure they would have done that if they knew this was the alternative.

  10. sluman46953

    giive it a break… if you wanna change jobs your free to do so… why are they not if there contract is over. ?? people on here are total stupid !!!

  11. crosseyedlemon

    Maybe the Steelers can create an even uglier uniform to distract people from all the internal turmoil.

  12. emac22

    Forfeit his rights?

    The CBA gives rights to both sides and believe it or not that includes the Steelers.

    The Steelers have the right to tag him.

    He has the right to sit out

    He has the right to play under the tag

    Where does the CBA give him the right to go wherever he wants in the event the Steelers choose to tag him? Is that a CBA right, a God given right or just a moral right?

    • troll_smasher

      Guys like you are only drama queens with their panties in a wad. Bell has done ANY interviews complaining to the media or to anyone. He just did what he had to do. Sounds Your feeling are hurt b/c you can’t leave YOUR job and sit out.

  13. forwhomjoshbelltolls

    Looks like 93.7 will have plenty to talk about for the forseeable future.

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