Signing Le’Veon is the Only Option

Le’Veon Bell and the Steelers appear to be coming to a crossroads. That crossroad will make a significant turn in the right direction should the Steelers and Bell be able to come to an agreement on a multi-year contract in the near future. If they aren’t able to do so, then things could hit a brick wall.

The brick wall comes in the form of many issues. If the Steelers are forced to franchise tag Bell for the second season in a row, he would eat up 14.7 million of their salary cap. That isn’t a number that the team wants to absorb because they are already strapped for money heading into the offseason.

A long-term deal would allow Kevin Colbert and Omar Khan to allocate money in any way they please over an extended period of time. Not just taking a 14 million dollar cap hit this season. Bell can still make the same amount or more this season, but they can use bonuses and such to lower the cap number. They both need each other in this instance because the Steelers need all the cap space they can get this offseason.

They need to be able to spend some money on the defensive side of the ball. They’re only a few pieces short of being a serious contender again next year. Having flexibility this offseason will be key and it could all hinge on Bell.

Then there is the threat of Bell retiring. Bell broached the topic two weeks ago when it was brought up to him by ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler. Even if Bell doesn’t retire he surely would sit out training camp for the second straight season. While Randy Fichtner isn’t a new hire to the staff as offensive coordinator, he likely will be adding new things to the offense that Bell will need to learn.

Bell missing all of training camp this season had a negative affect on an offense that didn’t seem to find its way until midway though the year. A team that had a goal of scoring thirty points a game could barely find the end zone. Losing in Chicago, and against Jacksonville while scoring a combined 26 points.

That said, Bell still was a key cog as the ‘Killer B’s’ (Ben Roethlisberger, Antonio Brown, and Bell) found their way down the stretch finishing the season averaging over 30 points per game in their final 5.

He finished the season with 1,291 yards rushing, 688 yards receiving and a combined 11 touchdowns. He earned All-Pro honors, and will play in the Pro Bowl on Sunday afternoon.

Moving on without Bell would be completely out of the question. That’s already evident with both parties working towards a new deal. Hopefully it comes sooner rather than later.

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