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Steelers Fantasy: Would You Take Le’Veon Bell As Top Pick?


The Steelers Le’Veon Bell is one of the best running backs in the NFL. Much like his teammate wide receiver Antonio Brown, it’s hard to argue against Bell being currently the best at his position.

But is he fantasy material?

Would he be deserving of being considered the highest ranked prospect in fantasy football leagues?

Would he be your first pick?

Last season Bell had an average pick of going 4th in NFL.com’s fantasy leagues. Bell did not let owners down by racking up 287.5 points – a 113 point increase from the previous season. His average was 18 points per game.

With Adriane Peterson’s status up in the air, it’s hard to not just put Bell right up there as the favored number one selection.

Bell has an incredible workout ethic this offseason. Bell is a very motivated young man – if you haven’t noticed Bell on Twitter, he kind of walks around with a chip on his shoulder. He’s out to prove people completely wrong.

Bell is also one of the best pass catching receivers in the league, and nabbed a whopping 83 receptions on the season. That’s at least 10 catches more than most receivers in the NFL and he caught the ball 80% of the time he was targeted.

Sure, it’s easy to get wrapped up in the debate that Bell could be limited in his role for two reasons. Firstly, the three game suspension, unless it’s lessened in his appeal process, will cause him to not be as productive were he to play a full season. That one’s difficult to avoid, but it’s crazy to not take him just because you need to find a three week plug.

Besides, do you think his production is going to drop any because he wasn’t taking hits for the first three weeks?

Secondly, Bell’s role could be diminished due to the supporting cast around him – Ben Roethlisberger has at least two (potentially three) major targets to throw the ball to other than Bell. That’s a great problem for Steelers fans, but not if you have Bell in your league.

I honestly don’t feel this to be anywhere near an issue. If you’re familiar with Todd Haley and his offensive schemes, you know that the offense ran the ball 40% of the time and passed 60%. Yet, Bell racked up the stats that he did. Why? Because, Haley L, O, V, E, S, loves the check down throw, and Bell was the beneficiary of most of them.

Every time Bell touches the ball, whether rush or receiving, it’s always positive yards and points.

Bell may not have the explosive nature that someone like Adriane Peterson has. But, he is such an integral part to the Steelers offense that he will rack up points on that premise alone.

Do yourself a favor, take Bell first in you draft. There’s no risk in doing so. If you’re worried about those first three weeks, well then show what kind of fantasy owner you are and find a good substitute for that time frame. Say someone like… ohhhh I don’t know… DeAngelo Williams.

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