When a report of a Steelers offer of five years and $70 million to running back Le'Veon Bell surfaced on Monday, there was no word of how much of that money was fully guaranteed.
Bell’s agent Adisa Barkari didn’t say in a Tuesday radio interview, but said the total value didn’t matter nearly as much as how much of the contract was fully guaranteed. According to a report from Ian Rapoport of NFL Media, there wasn’t a lot of it guaranteed in the Steelers’ final offer.
Rapoport reports that a $10 million signing bonus was the only fully guaranteed portion of the contract. He adds that Bell stood to make $33 million over the first two years in a “rolling guaranteed structure” and $45 million over the first three years of the deal.
As long as the Steelers don’t rescind the franchise tag, Bell is guaranteed $14.5 million this year by reporting to the team before the first game of the regular season so it’s not hard to understand why he’d be looking for a bigger upfront commitment than the one the Steelers were reportedly ready to make this offseason.