Pittsburgh Steelers send clear message to Le’Veon Bell

KANSAS CITY, MP - JANUARY 15: Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger
KANSAS CITY, MP - JANUARY 15: Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger /

The Pittsburgh Steelers sent a pretty clear message to Le’Veon Bell – Get back on the field!

The message is clear. Both GM Kevin Colbert and head coach Mike Tomlin have made their opinions clear on Le’Veon Bell’s holdout situation.

Colbert addressed the issue last week, “My feeling is there’s nothing to be gained by a holdout,” Colbert said to Ed Bouchette of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. “The situation won’t change, it can’t really change from our part on a long-term deal. So it hurts him not to be here. It hurts him because he’s not working with his teammates, he’s not getting the conditioning work that he’s going to need to have a great 2017 season. And he’s not working with his teammates to get acclimated to the offense — every year it’s different.”

Tomlin seemed even less pleased with the star running back in his comments over the weekend:

“I have no idea when he’s going to show up,” Tomlin said. “I need him here yesterday. Not only for us, but for him. And that’s my opinion. This team development process, this preseason, this work that we’re doing out here is very much a part of overall game readiness. He’s a tremendous athlete, he’s highly conditioned, but this is football out here and you cant simulate that. So, my opinion is I need him here yesterday, but I don’t always get what I want. So, when he gets here, we’ll deal with it and move forward.”

Although Ramon Foster’s recruiting effort is a funny troll of Bell, players are still trying to get the running back to camp:


Kevin Colbert made it obvious that with Bell not at camp they’ll have their “eyes on other guys”.

The Steelers have been thin at running back so far this training camp. Both James Connor and Trey Williams went down with injuries, which is part of the reason why 2015 undrafted free agent, Terrell Watson, got the opportunity to rush for 44 yard and one touchdown on ten carries vs the Giants.

Luckily, James Connor was back on the field this week and got some run in 7 on 7 drills with the first team offense on Monday.

Connor is fighting to be the number two back behind Bell. The University of Pittsburgh product had a productive collegiate career with 3733 yards rushing and 56 total touchdowns. He hopes to carry the momentum of his 1396 yard 20 touchdown junior season, to the NFL.

Other running backs Fitzgerald Toussaint and Knile Davis have had up and down camps. Davis showed promising work vs the Giants with eight carries for 34 yards, but didn’t show much as a kick returner, one return for 15 yards.

Next: Steelers making a roster spot push

Nevertheless, the presence of Le’Veon Bell is vital for the Steelers’ preparation of the 2017 season. Like Mike Tomlin said, he is a highly conditioned athlete with a rigorous workout schedule, just watch his snapchat, but time on the field with Ben Roethlisberger, Antonio Brown, and the offensive line will help the pro-bowl running back get up to game speed before week one.