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Former Steelers Guard Ramon Foster Reflects On Le’Veon Bell’s Problematic Holdout in 2018

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Former Steelers Guard Ramon Foster Reflects On Le’Veon Bell’s Problematic Holdout in 2018

Former Pittsburgh Steelers running back, Le’Veon Bell has gotten some buzz recently after his apparent retirement statement he posted on his Instagram account. Bell has moved on from football, at least for the time being, to focus on his boxing career.

Former Steelers Running Back Le’Veon Bell

Former Steelers running back, Le’Veon Bell – Bucs Nation

This didn’t come as a shock to many now, as he has had trouble finding and sticking to a roster since his release from the New York Jets. Bell notoriously held out all of 2018 in dramatic fashion. He did not play a down for the Steelers that year. He signed with the Jets the following year after negotiations failed with the Steelers.


Ramon Foster opens up about what it was like during Bell’s holdout

Former Steelers guard, Ramon Foster recently spoke about what it was like for him during Bell’s holdout and the comments he made during it. Here’s what he had to say:

“That was one of our last windows…whether it was miscommunication or false communication, we thought he was going to be at camp. My whole thing was I’m a rep. I understand the position I’m in to try to get guys as much as they can as often as they can…I’m all for the betterment of the players…I’m a curator of trying to make sure guys get as much as they can. Our situation with him, this is actually the first time I ever spoke about this too, was more or less don’t give it back. I understand your mission and what your goals are. You can come and fake a hammy all year, say you have headaches, you ain’t got to play.”

Foster continued to elaborate on the situation:

”My thing was, for a lot of us, a lot of people can’t do what we’re doing right now and have conversations. You’re in a position to maximize as much as you possibly can. You’re going to get it by any means necessary. I knew what we had in Pittsburgh was probably better than anything else out there, because one; we all kind of grew up together the way we blocked for him, they way he ran, and the system we ran. Two; it’s best for everybody if everybody stays together and from what they’re offering you from the deal that I heard, again it’s hearsay, was very very nice. The issue was guarantee. Pittsburgh’s never given out a lot of guaranteed money, but if you look at the contracts they give out, everyone is getting about 80% of their deal. Everybody. My guarantees weren’t high, nobody I knew guarantees were high, the way they did it in Pittsburgh.

Now, he’s also a running back, you got that aspect of it too. So I was like you know, he’s making  this, he should come make it and get this bag. We didn’t care what he did, just come and get the bag, that was my angle. It didn’t come out that way, just come get the bag that’s all that mattered. You choose to play fine, whatever, just come get the bag. We will say don’t pocket watch, don’t look at somebody’s money, but guess what happens after they go broke? You talk about them. This is what happened right here. I don’t know his finances or anything, but he’s made a whole lot of  headlines.”

Foster admitted after this he has no ill will towards Bell:

“I have no malice against him. We dapped him up when we played the Jets. Everything’s fine, we cool, my bad too. I’ll acknowledge that, if I mess up, I’m going to own that, it’s fine.”

Foster admits he was more frustrated that he felt other people were influencing Bell’s decision to score a huge gain for his and his family’s future:

“That was my biggest thing. You want to preserve this mantra of telling guys to do something that you will never do. You’re not going to leave that on the table. What other business is paying that way?”

Foster’s sentiments definitely seem sincere, and it seemed he was looking out for Bell when he made comments about the holdout. His being a rep and looking at it from a business perspective makes even more sense. He just wanted to see his teammate get paid and also keep the special run they had going in place as long as possible.


EAST RUTHERFORD, NEW JERSEY – DECEMBER 22: David DeCastro #66 and Ramon Foster #73 of the Pittsburgh Steelers look on during the first half of the game against the New York Jets at MetLife Stadium on December 22, 2019 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images)

Foster and Bell played together for all of Bell’s tenure as a Steeler from 2013-2017. Bell was voted to three Pro Bowls in that time, and was easily a top five running back during his tenure. This was largely due to the prowess of Foster and the rest of the o-line at the time that were also considered largely a top five unit in the league.

Bell and Foster likely had many more good times together than they did bad playing together. As Foster said, there seems to be no ill will between the two. They are both retired, as a new generation of Steelers try to give the fans the same kind of explosive run game as they did in their tenure with the team.


The full clip can be seen here:




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Lifelong Steeler fan from Long Island, NY . Bleed black and gold. Love sports discussions and giving my opinion, especially when it comes to the Steelers. Follow me on twitter @SeanPMcGeown! Here We Go Steelers!

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