NFL Rumors: Jets Could Look to Trade Le'Veon Bell, Jamal Adams in Offseason

Tim Daniels@TimDanielsBRFeatured ColumnistDecember 10, 2019

New York Jets' Le'Veon Bell in action during an NFL football game against the New York Jets, Sunday, Oct. 6, 2019, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)
Matt Rourke/Associated Press

The New York Jets will reportedly head into the 2020 NFL offseason open to trading both running back Le'Veon Bell and safety Jamal Adams.  

Ralph Vacchiano of SNY reported Sunday the Jets will be "more receptive" to Bell offers than they were at the 2019 trade deadline, while the Dallas Cowboys are expected to make another push for Adams after they made a "hot pursuit" before the deadline but couldn't get a deal done.

Bell sat out the entire 2018 season while with the Pittsburgh Steelers because he didn't want to play under the one-year deal associated with the franchise tag. New York signed him to a four-year, $52.5 million contract in March, which became a point of contention within the franchise.

Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News reported chairman Christopher Johnson and general manager Mike Maccagnan, who was fired in May, moved forward with the signing of the three-time Pro Bowler even though head coach Adam Gase said privately he "absolutely" didn't want Bell or any other high-priced back.

A source told Vacchiano "it's become pretty clear that Adam Gase can't find a way to make him the centerpiece of their offense, or doesn't want to."

Bell has rushed for 589 yards on 183 carries to put him on pace for a career-low 3.2 yards per attempt. He's added 55 receptions for 403 yards with just four total touchdowns in 12 games.

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The 27-year-old Ohio native pointed to a lack of touches as a key reason for his limited success during an appearance Friday on the 17 Weeks podcast (via Bryan DeArdo of CBSSports.com).

"I've been playing in this league for a long time. I've always been kinda used to like, getting the ball 20, 25, 30 times," Bell said. "Because that's what my body can handle and that's the type of player I've always been. Even in college, at Michigan State, I was getting the ball that much."

In an era where running backs have been devalued in favor of key contributors in the passing game, it's hard to imagine the Jets finding a taker for the remaining portion of Bell's high-priced contract. Cutting him with a post-June 1 designation would leave $13 million in dead cap space for 2020, per Spotrac.

Meanwhile, Adams won't match his 115 total tackles from last season, but he's remained a key cog for the Jets defense in 2019. He's tallied 64 tackles, 6.5 sacks, six passes defended, two forced fumbles and an interception he returned for a touchdown.

Finding interested suitors for him should be a lot easier than with Bell since he's under contract for two more years as part of his rookie contract, including a team-favorable $7.1 million cap hit in 2020.

If New York does move the safety, the Cowboys would be the favorite given their need at the position and the likely pressure to upgrade the roster following an underwhelming season.