Report: Jets are divided on pursuing Le’Veon Bell

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The Jets, for months, have seemed to be the perfect option for running back Le'Veon Bell. And that may indeed be the case. But the Jets may have to work out some internal issues before that happens.

Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News reports that the Jets currently are divided on whether to sign Bell. Per the report, some don’t believe he’s worth the “anticipated price tag” of $15 million or more per year, and there are concerns about “his mileage and mercurialness.”

Then there’s the concern that the Jets could once again be used as leverage for Bell to get the most money he can, from someone else. Last year, New York’s interest in Kirk Cousins (bullet dodged) helped him get $84 million over three years from the Vikings. This year, New York’s interest in Bell could get him more from someone else, like maybe the Raiders.

Manish also explains that some in the building believe that the team’s new offense under coach Adam Gase doesn’t need a star running back to thrive. Of course, making a play for Bell would be about more than football. It would be about business, too — and the Jets have had a hard time competing from a business standpoint with the other team that plays in their stadium.

That’s where the rubber could meet the road. The football people (Gase) won’t want to spend the money for a luxury player whom the Jets may not really need. The money people may not care about that, coveting the prospect of having a press conference and holding up a jersey and selling tickets and generating interest and attention and dumping cash and cap dollars into the remaining years before quarterback Sam Darnold gets a second contract.

30 responses to “Report: Jets are divided on pursuing Le’Veon Bell

  1. “some in the building believe that the team’s new offense under coach Adam Gase doesn’t need a star running back to thrive”

    LOL!. Gases’s offenses haven’t exactly been doing much thriving the last few years with or without an elite RB.

  2. The fact of that matter is that even if the RB position doesn’t play a prominent role in Gase’ Offense, Bell will undoubtedly help Darnold’s development. Having someone reliable to hand the ball to, and not having to throw 35+ times a game while playing from behind will keep Darnold fresh. Bell’s ability to block will keep him protected, and finally, Bell’s ability to catch out of the backfield gives Darnold an emergency outlet when things go South. To me, it’s more about saying you have a star running back, or even having him rush for 1,500 yards. It’s about putting reliable people around Darnold, to help him continue to develop.

  3. The jets are in a deceiving situation. They have a ton of cap room but have more spots to fill than any other team (both sheer numbers and talent wise) – I’d be surprised if they allocated such a large portion of their available cap space to Bell

  4. “….The money people may not care about that, coveting the prospect of having a press conference and holding up a jersey and selling tickets and generating interest and attention…” Didn’t they doe this when the ‘stole’ Darrel Revis from the Pats? How did that work out in the end?

  5. Signing Bell will definitely augment business for the Jets, he would make them relevant. Darnold and Bell equals increased ticket sales.

  6. Hmm Money people and Football people….Smart people would pass on Bell regardless of his talent, there are way to many holes on this team to invest that kind of money on a running back especially with that offensive line, Coleman out of Atlanta would be a better option.

  7. The NFL figured out Bell late in the 2017 season. He has lost his burst. Has off field issues. Is a prima donna. Always hurt in playoffs. Not a winner. Likes money.

  8. I’m a lifelong Jets fan and I would rather see them spend the money elsewhere.

    You can get RB more cheaply and I don’t think Bell, quite frankly, is a good enough back to justify this type of money. Maybe Ezekiel Elliott or Saquon Barkley, but not Bell. He lacks explosiveness for one thing.

  9. Watching this whole AB saga play out, the instant issues with the Gurley deal and then considering giving long term, big, guaranteed money to Bell – a player who is BFFs with Brown the Untouchable, a more significant injury history than Gurley who has sat out a full season – is giving the Jets second thoughts? Wow who would have guessed.

  10. When’s the last time that the winner of free agency then translates that into success on the field? Look at the example that was mentioned in the article with Kirk Cousins, the Vikings took a huge step back last year, after winning the free agency season. Really good teams draft well, sign free agents after the really hot period and trade for veterans when they still have a hole that needs to be plugged.

  11. A solid RB may not be worth what it once was, but they sure can ease the pressure off a young QB, and even an offense as a whole. Look at Wentz with Blount/Ajayi vs last year. Look at when Dak plays with backup RBs. Tons of examples throughout history of RBs complementing an offense and making a QBs job easier.

  12. kevines255 says:
    March 11, 2019 at 11:47 am
    Get Tevin Coleman and draft a guy in the 3rd round.

    For real, I have no idea why people are sleeping on Coleman. Dude is a legit 3 down back who has been a back up for years (so less wear and tear) and will come to a team for cheap. Much better alternative than Bell.

  13. Hey, Bell is a fantastic talent. But the nightmare involved in signing him – for teams and fans alike – is paying him some ungodly amount of money (which would have started at the $14 million he passed up and will be much higher) and then he blows out his knee during OTAs or training camp.

    RBs should be paid better. They are vital to success in the NFL, but are too often dismissed as products of a system. Having said that, paying $14 million-PLUS for the RB position which takes a ton of punishment? No thanks. He’s great, but that’s just a HUGE risk for any team.

  14. I keep hearing people say Jets have too many holes, so dont get Bell since he wants 15 mil a year. Jets have 82 mil to spend, only have 7 major holes to fill, and 1 of them will be filled with the 3rd pick. The major holes are DT, a pass rusher, no 2 CB, nickel CB, RB, WR, C. They could give Darby and Bryce Callahan 20 mil combined, Paradis 10 mil, Bell 15, Flowers 17 mil, draft DT Quinnen Williams, and then sign Donte Moncreif for a cheap 6 mil. Thats 68 mil total, all problems solved, use the rest to resign their kicker, punt returner, bench players, and draft picks. If they wanna save more money they can pass on Flowers, draft Josh Allen and sign Sheldon Richardson again for 9 mil. So no, signing Bell wont hurt them.

  15. I hope he goes to Oakland – him & Brown are founding members of the “no-ring mafia” & would continue to be me-first players together in Sin City.

  16. Not only do the Jets have a lot of holes to fill, but their cap space is a little bit of an illusion. They have the least amount of players under contract in the NFL the next couple of yrs. I believe they only have 29 players signed for 2020. Bell is the kind of guy a team on the verge should sign to put them over the top. Not a rebuilding team that even their staunchest fan should admit has a way to go.

  17. What did the Dolphins offense do under Gase last year? They were awful, so why would the Jets be any different this time around with him? The only plus might be Sam Darnold because he maybe better than Tannerhill.
    Remember Gase had problems in the locker room with Ajhyi, Suh & Landry. Interesting to see how he would deal with Bell after his behavior with the Steelers, another ‘me first” player.

  18. The Jet’s are smart to weigh the pros & cons of signing Bell who was *rumored* to want $17 mil st one time and be the current highest paid RB (that’s a pipe dream he should let go) if he agrees to a reasonable contract then that’s one thing, but if he wants WAY more than say $13 mil then the Jets should pass. sitting out a year might have done more harm than good so buyer beware

  19. $15M would go a long way into shoring up several other positions of need on the team. I think it would be crazy for any team to give him that kind of money unless they were already loaded. The Steelers were able to replace him with James Conner so what makes any other team think he’s worth $15M? Just draft a RB and address other needs on the team.

  20. Actually the business people who are smart realize building a winning culture sells tickets long term and that does not include Leveon Bell who is a finishing piece and not a building block. Want to overpay someone? Overpay Tevin Coleman for 7 million a year, a guy with low miles. Not Lev Bell at 16 million a year. Just have a look at all the teams that overpaid guys first day of legal tampering, they’re not exactly models of winning.

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