Joique Bell turned down pay cut to stay with Lions

Getty Images

The Lions released running back Joique Bell last week, but he says they offered him a chance to stick around before making the move.

Bell was set to make $2.5 million in salary during the 2016 season and was offered a chance to stay in Detroit at a lower number, but said he “ended up declining the offer” because he thought it was the best move for his career.

“There’s no bad blood between me and the Lions,” Bell said, via “They did what was best for the organization and I did what I thought was best for my family. You never know, I might end up back with the Lions, but I owe it to my family, I owe it to myself, I owe it to my hard work and dedication to test the market, so that’s what I’m doing.”

Bell had multiple surgeries last offseason and only got 90 carries in 13 games during the regular season. He averaged just 3.5 yards per carry on those touches, which isn’t the sort of production that guarantees a robust market so Bell’s decision might not work out all that well for a back turning 30 in August.

16 responses to “Joique Bell turned down pay cut to stay with Lions

  1. Bell was a 4th option at RB. Abdullah and Riddick will be the 1-2 punch with Zenner or a draft pick as a power back option. I’d rather take Bell’s 2.5mil and spend it on bringing Tyrunn Walker back or making a run at a LB or CB (please let’s not pass on Trumaine Johnson again). Probably need a WR too.

  2. I don’t think that’s a wise move for Joique. There’s always a few backs in his situation where you get to October, injuries start hitting the guys who are still playing, and those names turn up as emergency options and you say “wow, they’re out of the league entirely?” but you realize that they’re 30, coming off an injury, more costly and with less upside than a rookie, and with no special teams value.

  3. Why take a pay cut to play in Detroit.
    Take a pay cut and go elsewhere.
    Unless he’s so bad that he won’t make an opening day roster.

  4. A good agent would have taken the cut and guarantee the money. Lions fans are right, he probably wouldn’t have made the roster anyway

  5. He wants to see whats out there, and if he can’t get the contract he likes (he won’t), then he wants a 1 year prove it deal somewhere he has a chance to touch the ball. Not happening in Detroit, too many young developing backs there.

  6. He’s the guy who could get the tough yards. Unfortunately he went from 1182 combined yards in 2014 to 597 last year. He still has value but not at his current salary.

  7. Teams sign players to contracts that the teams know they aren’t going to honor on the day they sign them. Somehow that just doesn’t strike me as being legal, and it’s certainly not honorable. But what do I know? I just believe when there’s a contract both parties have an obligation to honor the terms of said contract.

  8. nclbrt knows nothing. Every NFL contract sets forth duration of contract, base salary, bonuses and any guaranteed money. One part of every contract is the possibility that the contract may be terminated. Hence, a team can honor the contract and cut a player in accordance with contract the player voluntarily signed. It’s very simple.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!