Friday, 16 November, 2018

Bengals business as usual while Steelers meltdown over Le'Veon Bell intensifies

Steelers teammates turn on Le'Veon Bell: 'He f--ked us' ‘One Person Doesn’t Make Or Break You:’ Steelers Prepare For Week One Without Le’Veon Bell
Edward Snyder | 06 September, 2018, 23:45

The Steelers typically sit players who don't practice in full on Fridays, and Bell hasn't entered team headquarters in almost eight months.

His teammates seem to be preparing for the Browns with the realization Bell will not be on the field this Sunday.

If Bell actually sits out through Week 10, he would lose $8.55 million. 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? We've got a lot of weapons.

Conner went through a Bell-like slim-down after his rookie season, which was cut short by a knee injury (torn MCL).

With the National Football League season opener scheduled to start on September 6, Pittsburgh Steelers running back Le'Veon Bell still remains locked in an intense contract dispute with his team, failing to report for training or preseason games.

The Steelers and Bell are in this situation because, for the second straight year, the parties couldn't agree on Bell's worth before the July 16 deadline to reach a long-term deal with franchise-tagged players.




"He f-- us", one veteran player summed it up for ESPN. Team spokesman Burt Lauten said the club would not conduct talks with Bakari through the media, adding "if Adisa would like to talk further, he has the phone number to our offices".

But players - especially those who block for Bell - have no issues discussing. "When he gets here, I hope he'll be ready to go".

Pittsburgh's confidence in Conner is not just lip service for the "next man up". "This offense is more than one guy". Bell can hold out for 10 weeks without losing a year of free agency and won't lose a ton of money as he can make a considerable amount of money without playing a full season.

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. We know that he's one of the best in the business and he helps every week.

"That's nothing to say negative about the Steelers". 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.

But the frustration has now leaked into the locker room to the point where players now appear to be on management's side - or at least they're not respecting the way Bell is going about his holdout, seemingly leaving many of them in the dark on his plans. Conner is a tough runner who should draw the start for a Week 1 trip to Cleveland, and perhaps the Steelers will want to prove a point by showcasing him.

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