Le'Veon Bell Waived by Buccaneers After Leonard Fournette's Return from Injury

Adam WellsJanuary 22, 2022

TAMPA, FL - JANUARY 16: Tampa Bay Buccaneers Running Back Le'Veon Bell (6) warms up before the NFL Wild Card game between the Philadelphia Eagles and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on January 16, 2022 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida. (Photo by Cliff Welch/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
Cliff Welch/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Le'Veon Bell's stint with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers has ended. 

The Bucs announced Saturday they have waived Bell to make room on their roster for Leonard Fournette. 

Fournette will be eligible to play in Sunday's NFC Divisional Round game against the Los Angeles Rams after being activated off injured reserve. 

Fournette has missed the last four games because of a hamstring injury suffered during Tampa Bay's 9-0 loss to the New Orleans Saints on Dec. 19. 

The Bucs signed Bell on Dec. 22. He appeared in each of the final three regular-season games but didn't play last week in their 31-15 playoff win over the Philadelphia Eagles. 

Bell only touched the ball 12 times and gained 49 yards with the Buccaneers. The three-time Pro Bowler also played five games for the Baltimore Ravens earlier this season before being released Nov. 16. 

Fournette signed with the Buccaneers in September 2020 after his release from the Jacksonville Jaguars. The 27-year-old made an early impact with 103 yards on 12 carries in his second game with the team. 

During Tampa Bay's playoff run last season, Fournette racked up 448 yards from scrimmage and four total touchdowns on 82 touches in four games. 

Before his injury last month, Fournette was on pace for his most productive season, as he gained 1,266 yards from scrimmage and scored 10 total touchdowns. He was averaging 90.4 yards per game in 14 appearances. 

Fournette's return comes at a perfect time for the Buccaneers. The Rams ranked sixth in the NFL with 103.2 rushing yards allowed per game during the regular season. They held the Arizona Cardinals to 61 yards on the ground in the NFC Wild Card Round last week.