Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sport
Can Le'Veon Bell revive the Steelers' run game?
The Pittsburgh Steelers' run game in 2012 was one of the team's worst in decades, prompting them to draft running back Le'Veon Bell in the second round this year. The hope is that Bell, a speedy, shifty prospect out of Michigan State, can give the Steelers' ground game an element of dynamism and unpredictability they sorely lacked last year—as well as more overall stability at the position.
Bell joins incumbents Isaac Redman, Jonathan Dwyer and Baron Batch as well as free-agent addition La'Rod Stephens-Howling in the battle to get the most carries this year. Bell is lowest on the depth chart presently, though this is expected to change after training camp begins.
The main concern with Bell is his pass-blocking—he didn't do much of it in college, but it's a skill that is required out of most NFL backs, including those in Pittsburgh. This could limit how much work he gets this year, especially on third downs, but the fact that he was drafted so highly (especially for the Steelers) as well as the reported switch to a zone-blocking scheme in the offensive line, certainly indicates he'll be getting a significant number of carries in his rookie season.
Stat Prediction: 280 carries, 1,010 rushing yards, six rushing touchdowns; 20 targets, 10 receptions, 220 receiving yards, one receiving TD