Le'Veon Bell on Possible Holdout: 'I Am Not Going to Sit'

Alec Nathan@@AlecBNathanFeatured ColumnistMarch 8, 2018

PITTSBURGH, PA - JANUARY 14:  Le'Veon Bell #26 of the Pittsburgh Steelers runs with the ball against the Jacksonville Jaguars during the first half of the AFC Divisional Playoff game at Heinz Field on January 14, 2018 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Pittsburgh Steelers running back Le'Veon Bell appeared on Instagram live Wednesday and intimated he won't make good on his previous threat to hold out for the entire 2018 season. 

"Honestly no, I am not going to sit," he said, per The Athletic's Mark Kaboly. "I am going to be in the facility Week 1."

Bell added that he plans to treat this offseason like last year's, when he skipped OTAs and training camp but reported to the Steelers in time for the start of the regular season. 

On Tuesday, the Steelers informed Bell they would designate him as their franchise-tag player for the second season in a row. The 2018 franchise tag for running backs will pay Bell $14.5 million if he signs it. 

Bell and the Steelers have until July 16 to strike a long-term deal, and the three-time Pro Bowler recently told ESPN.com's Jeremy Fowler he felt better about negotiations than he did a year ago. 

"Earlier I said I felt we would get one done, and this year we are a lot closer than last year," he said. "In good spirit, I feel we can get something done. But unless something drastic changes, it won't be [this week]."

Bell also said he wants a deal that, at a minimum, averages $14.5 million annually since that number matches up with the tag value. 

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As far as Wednesday's comments are concerned, they mark a stark contrast to ones he made in an interview with Billboard's Andrew Unterberger that was published Tuesday. 

"Obviously, when the end of July comes, wherever we’re at… if I sign, everybody'll be happy, but if not, I guess I gotta play it by ear," he said. "If I'll be out till Week One, if I'll be out till Week Ten, or if I'm gonna be out there at all. It depends on how I feel at that time and moment."

Bell, 26, has totaled at least 1,800 yards from scrimmage in two straight seasons. 

Last year, the Michigan State product registered a league-high 321 carries for 1,291 yards and nine touchdowns. He also tallied 85 receptions for 655 yards and a pair of scores. 


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