Until deal is done, rumors are simply rumors surrounding Pittsburgh Steelers signing Le’Veon Bell


Okay, let’s be real, no one has any idea how close the Pittsburgh Steelers and Le’Veon Bell really are in signing a long-term deal.

Every other day, the story changes. Monday, the Pittsburgh Steelers are nearing a deal with Le’Veon Bell. Tuesday, they set a date to when they want the deal done. Wednesday, post after post appear about how close the two sides are on a deal. Thursday, the Steelers set a date to place the franchise tag on Bell. Friday through Sunday, everyone sits in silence wondering what’s actually going on.

It’s as much of a mystery as it was in January. Kevin Colbert can say whatever he wants, but right now, Bell and the Steelers are not signing a long-term deal.

Yes, that’s the goal by the end of the offseason. The Steelers are looking to keep Bell around for at least the next three to four years.

How they’re going to do so is still relying on the franchise tag, though. No one knows how cooperative Bell is being in negotiations, which makes Pittsburgh as confused as all of us. He could be in meetings telling them it’s $16 million a year with $30 million guaranteed or he’s retiring.

The Steelers aren’t going to do that. They want him around, and they’re staying optimistic, as they should, but that’s where their “timelines” are coming from.

Pittsburgh wants to have Bell inked by March 6, but that’s just Pittsburgh. Bell doesn’t care when this gets solved as long as he gets his money.

Which is exactly why the story continues to change. The Steelers are going to keep Bell around whether it’s a deal or the franchise tag. But until both sides are in agreement, this entire situation hasn’t gotten any clearer since last offseason.

It’s not fun for fans, or the team. Everything is up in the air and it all relies on Bell’s shoulders. So, while everyone is sitting around riding this emotional roller coaster, he’s keeping his options open.

This isn’t a pleasant experience. By the end of it, a lot of people are going to be fed up and Bell is going to lose fans in the city. But as long as he gets his money, he knows he can step on the field in August and win everyone back.

Next: Do the Steelers have a culture problem?

So, take everything with a sign of caution. Pittsburgh and Le’Veon Bell aren’t close to a deal. The team’s simply hoping for something they can’t control to work out.