Steelers losing patience with Bell as All-Pro RB stays out

Dean Simpson
September 6, 2018

"If you don't want to be here, it is what it is".

"Honestly it's a little selfish", said center Maurkice Pouncey, a captain who had predicted Bell would arrive by Wednesday. Clearly, that has not happened, and ESPN.com reports Bell is unlikely to play in Week 1.

Before you start barkin', just hear me out. Now when it's game time and you that you have $14 million looming out there, and you're still not here and your team really wants you here?

"I've got the opportunity to play the game again", said Conner, who endured a highly public battle with cancer during his college career. After all, it is Week 1 in the National Football League and Bell showed up on the Sunday prior one year ago.


The team hoped Bell would show up for work this week, but Bakari told NFL Live that Bell is "going to do the things necessary to protect his value long-term".

After all, few people saw the Khalil Mack trade coming together as quickly as it did, and the Steelers are now talking up Bell's would-be replacement, James Conner. "If Adisa would like to talk further, he has the phone number to our offices". Most players accept that this is their only way to get paid to play football in the NFL. "I think he gets to his spot really quick, which is awesome for a quarterback".

The Steelers have said they are "disappointed" that Bell hasn't signed, but their front office is as much to blame for this mess. He played in 14 games last season, gaining 144 yards on 32 carries for an average of 4.5 yards per carry. Bell is sitting out while thinking about his long-term future.

For each week he misses, Bell will lose $852,941.


It was pointed out to Bakari that he said earlier this year that he would follow the same blueprint as he did last season, when he reported ahead of Week 1.

Tempers are hot, at least among some Steelers offensive players who have committed the cardinal sin of negatively commenting on a teammate's contract. Paying players based on their production - rather than the position they play, a topic broached this offseason by my NFL.com colleague Bucky Brooks - is the approach teams should take when working with transcendent talents.

If Bell returns well into the season, Pouncey said he will tell him what's up and ask if he's ready. Haden not only played the Steelers twice a year but formed a friendship with Antonio Brown and kept up with Pouncey and fellow Gator-turned-Steeler Marcus Gilbert.

The Cleveland Browns could catch quite a break in the Week 1 matchup with the Pittsburgh Steelers.


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