Does “I’m back Pittsburgh” follow “Farewell Miami”?
The absent Steelers running back Le’Veon Bell, tweeted “Farewell Miami” on Monday, prompting a lot of people to believe that his, already, eight-week holdout might come to an end. The three-time Pro Bowler has been working out in the Florida City throughout his standoff with the team.
Fairwell Miami 👋🏾— Le'Veon Bell (@LeVeonBell) November 5, 2018
However, whatever Bell tried to imply with this message, everything seems to indicate that the 26-year-old runner hasn’t reached an agreement with the Steelers yet. Not long before Le’Veon took to Tweeter, ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler reported that the Steelers “have not had contact with Le’Veon Bell this week,” adding that “barring new development in next few days, [the] team doesn’t expect Bell to report for [the] Thursday night game against Carolina.”
And, as a matter of fact, if the star running back is expecting to play for the remainder of the season, he has just a few days more to show up with the Steelers, since if he doesn’t by Nov. 13, 2018, he will not be able to play this year.
On the other hand, if Le'Veon Bell was expecting his teammates and coaches to be desperate for his return when he opted to stay away rather than sign to one-year franchise tend, he was wrong.
“We haven’t spent a lot of time focused on [Bell’s absence] because it’s not within our control. Those decisions are Le’Veon’s,” Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin told Dianna Russini from ESPN. “We need volunteers, not hostages.”
“It’s his own personal battle,” tackle Alejandro Villanueva said last week. “None of the players can really understand what he’s going through. But at the same time, the one thing that is happening is we’re playing football, we’re trying to win, we have a chance this year to be a really good team. Anything counterproductive to that, to the players, seems a little bit of a waste of time.”
And the main reason why neither Bell’s teammates nor Steelers’ fans are worried about his comeback it’s due to the outstanding season that James Conner has had.
Entering the Steeler’s Week 10, the second-year RB is second in yards from scrimmage (1,085) only behind Rams' out-of-this-world Todd Gurley and tied for fourth in total touchdowns (10). Conner is the only player in Steelers history with 1,000 scrimmage yards and 10 touchdowns through the first eight games of a season; besides being the only running back in the NFL history to rush for at least 100 yards, record at least 50 receiving yards and score at least one touchdown in four different games during the same season.
So, I’m sure that at this point of the season with Conner leading the Pittsburgh’s offense amazingly, Bell’s holdout doesn’t keep any Steeler’s fan awake at night.