Le’Veon Bell has no regrets

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Now officially a member of the Jets, running back Le'Veon Bell has no regrets about skipping the entire 2018 season in lieu of playing under the franchise tag for a second time. Of course, he’d never admit to having regrets if he did.

“The decision I made,” Bell told reporters, “I don’t regret anything that happened. Who can I say if I played on a franchise tag, if I do get hurt, do I sit here with the New York Jets with a beautiful deal?”

He’s right, even if some are arguing that he should have taken the long-term deal that the Steelers offered last year — one that carried at least $5 million less in fully-guaranteed money.

Once it was clear he’d be hitting the open market, Bell said that his next destination was the Jets all along.

“In all reality, the Jets were the team . . . that I wanted to go,” Bell said, adding that he grew up a Jets fans. “Once the numbers made sense, it wasn’t hard for me. . . . I’m happy where I stand.”

He’s stands in the shoes of a guy who last played football in January 2018.

“The fact that I took last year off, it sucked having to watch football, but at the same time in December and January it was the best my body felt in my entire life,” Bell said.

And so the Jets are getting a player who is healthy and rested and presumably motivated to prove that those who are doubting his decisions and downplaying his skills are wrong. The Jets benefit from that, both in the form of having a contract that isn’t quite what it could have been and a player who is determined to make the most of his second NFL stop.

85 responses to “Le’Veon Bell has no regrets

  1. never knew he was a huge jet/curtis martin fan…hopefully lightning strikes twice for the jets & they just nabbed themselves another hof rb.

  2. Good on him for not giving the Steelers one more drip of sweat! Steelers are like NE, they don’t want to pay their players, and instead want to use them up for pennies! He’s one year fresher and has a guaranteed contract. Those whining about last seasons contract don’t see the bigger picture. 2 years of a guaranteed contract is better than 1 season and risking injury that you’ll ever get paid again.

  3. It’s like spurning a career at Target to go to Dollar General. Doesn’t make a lot of sense.

  4. Jets fans you still are ugly sister to the pats! Hey Le’veon get ready to loose twice a year.

  5. They will tax him into next century there, the cost of living is thru the clouds, so from that perspective he got hosed.

  6. I think he would have choose the Jets regardless. Alot of tweets from 2011 of Bell rooting for the Jets. Sometimes players actually want to play for the team they liked growing up.

  7. I bet all the people saying that he should regret it because he lost out on a bunch of money are the same people that get mad when their team’s player chases a bigger contract on a different team.

  8. He wanted to be a Jet? That’s why they had to tell him he had to stop stalling and make a decision, and that’s why he tried to make it seem like there were other teams interested in him?

    Yep, he really wanted to be a Jet.

  9. He got less on the open market than he would’ve received from the Steelers. He probably has regrets but isn’t admitting it.

  10. I don’t care what he says, his plan backfired. The likelihood of him (or any player) suffering a career ending injury is slim. He sat out last season and turned down $14.5 mil. At worst he gets injured and may’ve missed time this off season or going into the season. Not sure that would’ve cost him $14.5 mil like sitting out did. Best case would be, he went out there and put up huge numbers. By doing so he would’ve gotten Gurley money, maybe more.

  11. Don’t worry Le’Veon, it won’t be any different with the Jets. They take off every December and January too.

  12. exinsidetrader says:
    March 14, 2019 at 7:58 pm
    Don’t forget the higher State and City tax in that mismanaged jurisdiction. He cost himself millions that he will never get back.

    they actually play in East Rutherford, New Jersey…..

  13. His decision. However, no matter how you look at it he can never recoup the 14M. Ever. That year and those dollars have come and gone. Yes, he could have been injured. He could also have a freak career ending injury in practice this fall. I wish him well, and hope the Jets start to be a competitive team. But no matter what anyone says, 14M is gone forever.

  14. And the Jets O-Line will love to hold blocks long enough for Bell to decide which hole he wants to run to.

  15. This guy and Gase will be like oil and water. Should be very interesting how this plays out.
    Hahahaha good luck Jets fans, you will see just how arrogant Gase really is first hand. He will ruin your best play makers

  16. Bell will never admit that he’s wrong. Subtract the 14.5 mil from the franchise tag he would have earned from the 26 million (25 guaranteed plus 1) he will get in the two guaranteed years from the jets.

    His bank account will only have 11.5 million more for TWO years of work once he recoups those lost wages.

    The only way he made the correct decision is if he had a career ending injury during his last year in Pittsburg.

  17. Both sides have a point. Bell lost 14 million guaranteed, that is true, but now he has over 30M in guarantees he may have never seen had he gotten hurt. We’ll never know, because he didn’t play last year and injury an Achilles or tear up a knee, he took the low risk approach. He didn’t want to risk future earnings for 14M guaranteed. Did he lose out on 14M? Technically yes, he did, we all understand that. But playing for that money, he may have missed out on the bigger guarantee he now has. Both sides of the argument should be able to understand that, it isn’t complicated.

    Given his position and the number of touches he gets, I personally do not blame him.

  18. Here’s a slant maybe if he plays and they win a superbowl. But of course actually factoring in being on a team and winning a superbowl doesn’t really factor into the equations does it. It is all about money. So tell me does any of this seem odd that it appears for Bell the only issue was about money. Not winning. That is the kind of guy I want on my team.

  19. That’s why the Jets are the Jets. James Conner will have a considerably better year and by week 10 Bell will be a locker room cancer. Book it.

  20. Judging by the number of dislikes on comments explaining how Bell won, and did not lose a thing there’s obviously not many readers of this column familiar with risk management.

  21. His entire gambit was based on the assumption that he would get injured in year 1 of his contract and never play again.

    So if he gets injured in the his first year playing for the jets, his strategy was sound. However if he plays into year two or beyond, he might as well have flushed that 14 mil down the toilet. Personally I’d prefer to maintain a more positive outlook on life and my career.

  22. No offense but players who assume the possibility shouldn’t play the game. There’s 53×16 people out there and countless other people who would die to get on that field. You didn’t like the offer – fine. But to sit back and say “who knows, maybe I got injured?” You have seriously lost anything you’ve ever had with me in terms of respect. Don’t want to get hurt (and mind you, *I* don’t want anyone to get hurt but I am a fan, not a player) then don’t play the game.

    Also agree with a previous poster on a different post…seems to be a lot less coverage of how this did not really work out for Bell despite his posturing. Bird in the hand is always better than one in the bush.

  23. He made the only deal that was offered to him, but more power to him if he is happy. I have more respect for him than I do for AB, who manipulated the who situation in Pittsburgh for more money. The man has no honor. Good luck to Bell.

  24. Steelers are like NE, they don’t want to pay their players

    New England pays the money to their ‘middle class’ of players instead of the top end.

    It’s a model that obviously works. That depth is critical late in the year.

  25. monarch76 says:
    March 14, 2019 at 7:50 pm
    Every player in the league should thank Belle for taking a stand.

    Because they can now see how you dont gain anything from doing that and you how can never get back the money you left on the table.

  26. Nflfollower, no matter how you try and slice it he made a bad decision. He turned down 30 mil guaranteed to play on a tag worth 12 mil or so. Then he turned down 14.5 mil. He had a similar guaranteed money in hand already BUT WANTED MORE. He got a few mil more but ALOT less in total money.

  27. The undisputed facts is that Bell has been running behind an offensive line that was ranked in the top 5 over the last several years. And was also running and catching with a dynamic pass offensive that has constantly been in the top 10 through his whole career.

    The Jets offensive line has been ranked in the bottom half of the NFL for years along with their passing attack. I just don’t see him having the same success and I see the Jets potentially getting him hurt trying to have him carry the weight of a mediocre offense.

  28. I truly believe Bell is happy, and not looking back with any animosity against Pittsburgh. He enjoyed a ton of success with the Steelers, and I think he needed a change. The Jets are a young, up and coming team, with a young elite franchise QB, and some studs on defense. Now Bell has a fresh start and a fat wallet. He’s happy, and hungry. The Jets are happy too. Definitely a bright future for the Jets.

  29. Bell is outstanding but the JETS. Don’t get it. Plus the tax rate in NY. His fame will skyrocket though and as Curtis Martin showed you can be slightly above average for a 5 year stint with a NY team and if you play well and the team makes in far in the playoffs you become a HOF player. So maybe Bell is crazy like a fox, because it’s clear, his only priority is himself.

  30. The Jets are the team he always wanted to go to? Really? Is this the same Le’Veon Bell who Tweeted that $60 million wasn’t “enough to come run with the Jets”?

  31. What does anyone expect Bell to say? Beauty is in the eye of the beholder I guess. It is clear that from the financial standpoint (excluding injury impact), he would have made significantly more money with the Steeler’s offer. But, it’s his life. He spent last year partying in Miami riding jet skis, while not being paid to play football. If that was worth about $20M to him, good for him. It’s his life. Time for all parties to move on. And I am a Steeler fan. At least Bell followed the rules of the CBA taking his actions, unlike mr. big chest.

  32. He could have been injured last year. But he also could have caught over 100 passes and ran for over 2000 yards and secured the biggest RB contract in the history of the NFL while also getting paid nearly $15m in 2018. He might have helped the Steelers make the playoffs, where even more money could have been made.

  33. The guy has natural talent but is not a workout guy and is lazy. He won’t play more than a couple more years. He won’t even be a memory.

  34. brownsallday78 says:
    March 14, 2019 at 9:30 pm
    Don’t worry Le’Veon, it won’t be any different with the Jets. They take off every December and January too.
    Lord have mercy, this browns fan is talking trash on the steelers for not making playoffs. This browns free agency hype has really gotten out of hand. The Browns have made playoffs ONE time in 20 years.

  35. I never understood why fans continue to think that pro athletes play for rings and championships. They play for $$$$$!!!! If they win, then great, but they want to get paid. Bell has more guaranteed money than he will ever spend in a kiddy AND he gets to live in NYC. As a 26 year old multi millionaire, would you rather live in Pittsburgh or NYC?? If I hav a wife, kids and I’m 40 plus, then yeah. But to be a millionaire in NYC is what people dream about.

  36. What is he suppose to say at this point? He’s not going to say, ” Yeah I messed up and played myself so I was forced to take this Jets deal.” He’s not going to tell the truth.

    He’s going to spin it to make himself look like a hero. When in reality he threw away 14.5 mil last year for no reason.

    Remember, this is the conversation on Twitter he had a year ago with a Jets fan:

    Jets Fan: ” Come and play for us for 60 Million contract.”
    L. Bell: ” Sorry..I’d need 100 million to play for the Jets.”

    A year later, he’s playing for the Jets for 52 million dollar contract.

  37. People saying he got hosed fail to see the big picture. His guaranteed money is better. Look at the other rbs got. Crap. He shreds his knee last year he gets crap. And being a jet gets you some endorsement clout

  38. Not surprising he’d want to get away from the now very apparent dumpster fire that is the Steelers lockeroom and franchise.

  39. I know I’m in the minority here, but I completely understand where LeVeon is coming from. Freedom and the ability to determine your own future isn’t something you can put a price on.

  40. The problem with todays game is these players only play for the money and not the game. Like they don’t have enough money to live on. Why should fans dish out money to people Leveon bell when all he cares about is what’s in his wallet.

  41. skawh says:
    March 14, 2019 at 7:59 pm

    Good on him for not giving the Steelers one more drip of sweat! Steelers are like NE, they don’t want to pay their players, and instead want to use them up for pennies! He’s one year fresher and has a guaranteed contract. Those whining about last seasons contract don’t see the bigger picture. 2 years of a guaranteed contract is better than 1 season and risking injury that you’ll ever get paid again

    Not one of best observations noting that they have to be paying somebody, they are up against the cap every year….

  42. Unless LaVerne LaBelle decides to take out career protection insurance, he made one of the dumbest decisions ever by a player. The money he gave up would have already covered him from the moment he paid the premium. Everything afterwards would have been taken care of – unless he does this now, he is an ever bigger fool.

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