Mike Tomlin says there are “consequences” for Le’Veon Bell’s absence

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Unlike players who are under contract, the Steelers can’t fine running back Le’Veon Bell $40,000 a day.

But coach Mike Tomlin suggested there’s still some price to pay.

Via Ray Fittipaldo of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, the Steelers coach used the words “consequences” when talking about his star running back’s contract-related absence.

“There is no question we are a group that values the team-building process,” Tomlin said. “And doing it in this setting, so yes, there is value, and yes, there are consequences for not being here. That’s the reality of it.”

Asked to specify what those consequences might be, Tomlin said: “They’re untold as we sit here.”

If the Steelers wanted to take the nuclear option, they could always pull the $12.1 million franchise tag. But that would make the central component of their offense a free agent immediately, so they obviously would be hesitant to do that.

But since he’s not signed, he can’t be fined. He also skipped all the voluntary work throughout the spring, and they didn’t necessarily expect him.

That doesn’t mean they don’t want him sooner rather than later.

“Obviously I would like for him to be here,” Tomlin said. “He is not. I am going to focus my energies on the guys who are. It’s an unfortunate circumstance, one that we’ll deal with, one that he’ll deal with. I’ve had good clean communication with him. I’ll keep the nature of that conversation between us. Rest assured he’ll be ready to play football. When he gets here, he gets here.”

Other players have also begun to prod Bell, but if the Steelers want him there, they can always prove their feelings toward Bell financially.

35 responses to “Mike Tomlin says there are “consequences” for Le’Veon Bell’s absence

  1. Are coaches allowed to haze players under the CBA? Normally I’d assume no, but predicting Goodellogic is literally a fool’s errand.

  2. Asked to specify what those consequences might be, Tomlin said: “They’re untold as we sit here.”
    ——————————————————–

    this guy has turned into a caricature of himself – what a knob.

  3. NFL running backs need to play hardball before they are thrown on the scrap heap He isn’t violating his contract Brown got his guaranteed money Tomlin s contract is guaranteed All a bunch of noise from coach Game 1 first handoff to Bell The only consequence will be no 2nd desert once he reports to camp

  4. “Mike Tomlin says there are “consequences” for Le’Veon Bell’s absence”

    The world says there are consequences if a HC trips a player from the opposing team.

  5. Holdouts are a fact of life in the NFL. But this one could end soon once the THC is flushed out of his system.

  6. firecracker87 says:
    Jul 28, 2017 9:24 AM
    Could you imagine if Bell was on the Patriots this year?

    ————–
    If he was on the Patriots and pulling this stuff he would be on the Browns.

    Honestly it sounds like Pittsburgh is better off practicing how to execute plays without him.

    And BTW, if Tomlin wants to make a statement the Browns will deal with him too, its not limited to Belichick. Or he can make the same statement dumping him on the Jets which puts him in the Patriot’s division at the same time.

  7. I can’t see any way Bell is with the Steelers next year. He’ll sign with the team that is dumb enough to pay him what he wants then whine about being on a losing team.

  8. Tomlin is such a tool. Hes gonna punish him as much as he punished AB for his SnapFace episode after the ” BIG WIN”…..He wont do anything to Bell because hes obsessed with catching the Patriots………

  9. Coaches should not get involved in players’ negotiations. Should offer support but limit comments to players currently signed and participating. Not sure what purpose Tomlin’s comments even serve here, or what its even supposed to mean, are the “consequences” for the team or Bell alone?

  10. Players that hold out like this simply don’t get proper condtioning compared to being part of OTAs and camp no matter how much they work out on their own

    As a result they seemto end up in IR by 3-4 games into the season at a much higher rate than players who showed up for the off season programs

    Its better for the league and fans of every team if a premier player like Bell is on the field all season. The Steelers would be insane if they paid him 15 mil a year though

  11. FoozieGrooler says:
    Jul 28, 2017 10:13 AM

    firecracker87 says:
    “..Could you imagine if Bell was on the Patriots this year?…”

    Yeah, then he’d have to learn to cheat

    HE WOULD NEVER SURVIVE IN FOXBORO……..EGOS TO BIG ….PLUS HES ONE JOINT HIT AWAY FROM BEING DONE FOR A YEAR……

  12. The consequences are the first time Bell runs the ball down the sideline in practice, Tomlin will try to trip him.

    Seriously — Le’Veon Bell is an excellent RB but he’s all about himself. One thing about the Steelers is they don’t care who the player is, they will not be intimated by him.
    So Bell can sit out as long as he wants. After all, they learned to get by without him when he was suspended, so it’s nothing new.

  13. Ooooh not just consequences but consequences of the untold variety, now that sounds serious. Like maybe even a stern talking to serious. All kidding aside there’s nothing they can do to him and if you are Bell there is no upside to signing the tender. RB’s are not QB’s, there’s a lot more risk to the position and playing under the tag all of that risk is his.

  14. “Other players have also begun to prod Bell…”

    Other Steelers players, stay out of this man’s pocket. And when it’s your turn to negotiate a agreement, he should stay out of yours.

  15. Jul 28, 2017 10:13 AM
    firecracker87 says:
    “..Could you imagine if Bell was on the Patriots this year?…”

    Yeah, then he’d have to learn to cheat.

    ——————————————————————-

    He’s still learning how to trip players from other teams when they run near the sideline. That’s why Tomlin wants him in camp. He has to teach him that.

  16. Tomlin needs to can his fake tough guy talk and grandiose claims. The Head Coach is guaranteed his salary and now he wants to make threats to a guy who technically isn’t even part of the team. Bell has every right to not sign that deal if he doesn’t want to. If loudmouth Tomlin wanted to put his money where his big bearded mouth is then lets see what happens if you pull the plug on Bell’s franchise tag. I guarantee 25 teams in this league would be tripping over themselves trying to get Bell’s agent on the phone ready to turn their roster upside down to get him under contract.

    See what uninformed people fail to realize is that Bell is not just any running back and a guy like him can’t be so easily replaced. He technically is Pitt’s number 2 WR too. Did anyone see how they rode him the second he stepped back onto the field? Averaged 22 carries and 7 catches, sounds a lot like he is doing two peoples jobs. Not to mention he pretty much willed that team to a playoff win over KC as Ben couldn’t hit water if it fell out of a boat that night. The team didn’t even score a flipping td but still won the game.

    Pitt has chosen to play hardball with Bell and make him play on his one year tag to try and coax his best season out of him since that is what they are going to need to beat the Pats. Ben has shown the teams hand in that he is good as done if not this season then next year when his contract runs out. Just because the running back market is in the dumps doesn’t mean that Bell has to take what is given to him. If he takes less, it will continue to suppress the running back market which is already criminally underpaid. This is Bell’s one shot at long term financial security and it’s just wrong that the Steelers are stringing this out.

    Bottom line, Tomlin needs to shut his big mouth as that organization has made him look one notch above incompetent and that is difficult to do. Sometimes I wonder how much better off this team would be if they just made him shave his beard and gave him a pair of pom poms as I’ve always felt he was nothing more than a glorified cheerleader…a soundbite.

  17. zeus1964 says:

    NFL running backs need to play hardball before they are thrown on the scrap heap He isn’t violating his contract Brown got his guaranteed money Tomlin s contract is guaranteed All a bunch of noise from coach Game 1 first handoff to Bell The only consequence will be no 2nd desert once he reports to camp
    ———–
    Seriously man, WHAT?

  18. mysterytonite says:
    Jul 28, 2017 10:23 AM

    This is Bell’s one shot at long term financial security and it’s just wrong that the Steelers are stringing this out.

    *****************************************************************************

    Not saying you’re wrong, but it’s not that black-and-white.

    First, regardless of whether the RB position is underpaid, the Steelers are not likely to be “the” team that winds up paying the huge league-leading contract. Other teams that are less frugal might. It’s a question of (business) philosophy, not what is morally right or wrong.

    Second, just as Bell needs to look out for his own long-term interests, so will the team. I like Bell — he’s talented, versatile, does a ton on the field. He also plays a position that wears people down, has his own non-negligible injury history, and has been suspended. That’s a lot of long-term risk to take on.

    Steelers evidently gave Bell what many would view as a fair offer. He had the choice to turn it down, which he did. In doing so, he’s electing to string this out just as much as the team is.

  19. Actually, there are consequences to using the franchise tag. This one is a double edged sword and you can’t have it both ways. Bell has every right not to show up as long as he doesn’t sign the tender. Teams and players are going to act in their own best interests and Bell is doing right by himself and the NFLPA.

  20. This guy is a great player now, no question. Best in the league. But imagine how his ridiculous style of stopping in the backfield and waiting for a tiny crack to burst through is going play out when he loses half a step and isnt the quickest player on the field anymore. It’s amazing to watch now, but it is just not sustainable long term. I’m sure he has more time at the top before the fall off, but given his position and his style, his effectiveness is going to fall off the table as abruptly as any RB we’ve seen. I hate the Steelers but they are smart enough to see it coming. They’ll pay him top dollar for this season and next, but won’t commit to anything longer term that handcuffs them. Very smart.

  21. whenwilliteverend says:
    Jul 28, 2017 10:08 AM
    I can’t see any way Bell is with the Steelers next year. He’ll sign with the team that is dumb enough to pay him what he wants then whine about being on a losing team.

    ————————

    My guess is he would then start demanding a trade.

  22. Most people commenting on Le’Veon’s decision to hold out simply don’t know the facts.

    The Steelers made the right move (they usually do). They offered him a front loaded 5-year deal that would have paid him $30-million over the first two years alone. Then $12-mill in his third season. LeSean McCoy currently has the biggest running back contract at $40-mill over 5 years. Bell’s contract would have been much larger than that.

    Le’Veon is gambling on himself big time. He’s missed 20 games (regular and postseason) in only four seasons. In those four seasons he’s had a lisfranc sprain, an ACL pull, an MCL tear and a groin injury. His last two seasons have ended with surgeries. Now he wants to bypass all of the preseason conditioning prior to the regular season??

    Haven’t even mentioned that the dude who likes to cut rap albums and hang out with Snoop Dogg in his spare time is one failure to puff, puff pass a drug test from being suspended for an entire season.

    From an investment standpoint, he seems like a pretty risky stock. Upside? Sure. Huge. Risk? Sure. Huge.

    As a die-hard Steelers fan, I’m not buying that his poor playoff performance in New England last season had as much to do with his groin as it had to do with the defensive scheme NE employed to contain him. Did NE just give the league the blueprint from holding him in check?

    What can happen this season for Le’Veon: 1) Holds out the preseason, shows up rusty for the regular season, injures himself and loses major leverage in long-term negotiations with any NFL team costing himself millions in the process. 2) Holds out the preseason, balls out in the regular season, receives a contract offer similar to the great offer the Steelers already offered him this preseason (but has to go to some mediocre franchise with a history of overspending in free agency that reduces his star power, sits him behind a lesser line, and with lesser supporting skills players). 3) Fails another drug test with all his July and August free time from not being at work. Suspended for a year. Loses major leverage in future negotiations.

  23. Go get that cheddar! A dynamic RB like Bell is easily the 2nd most important player on a team; yet, the average pay has been declining while others are sky rocketing.

    If guys like Randall Cobb and Tavon Austin are making 10+ million a year to be WR2’s (at best)… one of the top 3 RB’s in the league should be worth 15.

  24. Care to name 2 other RB’s making over 10 mil let alone 15 ? Go ahead I’ll wait and it will be a long one because they don’t exist.

  25. Under the CBA Bell cannot face any consequences that would be deemed to be punishment. The result, should Tomlin attempt to punish him, would be a successful grievance against the team.

  26. When people become all about the money, most especially when they are making plenty of money already, it affects their play due to some mysterious metaphysical principle. Pittsburgh seems to have some kind of personnel problems; not entirely behind the scenes, witness some of Antonio Brown’s behavior. Once again, for mysterious metaphysical reasons, this affects the play. I am looking for some amount of this as glaring evidence in the season ahead.

    Teams that win are TEAMS and cold blooded serious about what they are up to, like The Patriots. This is why people with damaged egos and borderline IQ’s, run around in a heat wave of painful jealousy and envy and make slanderous claims about these teams because they know their own team lacks this cohesiveness and discipline. They got to make up some kind of fable because ‘they can’t handle the truth’. Come the end of this season you’ll see all kinds of excuses for why Pittsburgh failed again, with all those weapons.

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