Le’Veon Bell: I don’t necessarily need preseason reps

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The Jets did not play running back Le'Veon Bell in their first preseason game and it doesn’t sound like there’s tremendous urgency to play him against the Falcons this Thursday either.

Head coach Adam Gase said this week that experiencing the “flow of the game” might be beneficial for Bell ahead of the regular season, but balances that with need for Bell “to be good for Week One” when it comes to making plans for exhibition games. Gase said it is something he’ll talk about with Bell, who seems to be on a similar wavelength as the head coach.

Bell said he is “definitely ready” to play, but knows the team is “going to protect me from myself” and believes it won’t take much for him to be back up to speed after his extended hiatus from game action.

“I don’t really necessarily need [preseason reps],” Bell said, via the New York Daily News. “If I get them, they’ll help. But I don’t think I’ll need them. I think once we get out there . . . football is football. I’ve been playing for so long. It naturally will come back to me. I’ll get adjusted to the game . . . in a couple plays and I’m ready to go.”

Bell could get those couple of plays in the team’s third preseason game, but it doesn’t sound like anyone should be surprised if the wait to see Bell in the Jets lineup extends into September.

41 responses to “Le’Veon Bell: I don’t necessarily need preseason reps

  1. LOL! And I don’t need a spoon for jello – if I get one, it helps, but I can eat jello without one.

  2. Shame nobody could “protect [Bell] from [him]self” last year when he decided to sit out the entire season.

  3. I would fully agree with Bell if he played last year and was coming back to the same team, but he obviously needs the reps.

    Doesn’t mean he won’t do well, but he would be better if he was more prepared.

  4. Teams have to get down to 53 players, and the pre-season is an opportunity to see the guys play that are on the bubble. There’s no need for a player like Bell to be stealing reps from the bubble guys. As long as he knows his pass blocking assignments, he’s good to go.

  5. Very hard guy to root for. He just has a habit of saying things that really don’t need to be said, but his ego commands him to say them anyhow. These guys need to learn from Derek Jeter and talk and say nothing.

  6. carloswlassiter says:
    August 14, 2019 at 7:47 am
    Is anyone going to be surprised when he pulls a hammy during the 1st quarter of week 1?

    —————————-
    Can’t rule it out. But also if something like that happens that quick then that shows how smart it was to not risk him any sooner than that.

  7. Amazing how many Steelers’ fans want to see this guy fail. You’ve got Conner, who was spectacular last year. Move on with your lives. Jets will be better than people think.

  8. Why do Steeler fans hate this guy more than AB? What he said isn’t particularly wrong and Bell himself said he wanted to play in the preseason but it was up to Gase. That’s what funny, there’s a difference between NEED and WANT believe it or not. The guy has stayed relatively quiet, he seems to get a long with the fans and his teammates well and at least he doesn’t go out of his way to trash the Steelers franchise. In fact, he had nice things to say about Colbert and the Rooney’s in one of his recent interviews, he’s also good friends with Conner and JuJu to this day.

  9. The Jets Bell Cow is a tender cut of beef. He will get the rare opportunity to be tenderized and thoroughly burned.

  10. He’s practicing, which is more than he did before the 2017 season- where he looked very shaky in the first few games. If he had been in camp the last two years, he probably wouldn’t have played much in the pre-season for the Steelers either.
    Bell is obviously talented, but there’s a reason why running backs don’t get payed like quarterbacks. If you do decide to pay one, you certainly don’t want them getting injured (or even accumulating wear and tear) in a meaningless practice game.

  11. For a normal veteran that would probably be correct. But he sat out for an entire season. Even if he thought he could just coast until real games started why would he want to give his new team that perception of him?

  12. ryann252013 says: August 14, 2019 at 9:08 am
    Why do Steeler fans hate this guy more than AB?
    ***********************************************************************************
    As a Steeler fan, I believe that you are wrong to believe that Steeler fans hate this guy more than AB. Brown was high maintenance. While he trained hard, he was generally a poor team mate (late for meetings and tantrums on the sideline), and was a major distraction with his personal conduct both on and off the field. Brown quit on the team last year, in the final (potentially important) game of the season which is already well documented.

    Bell was a different problem all together. He got suspended for drugs, and missed part of the season due to a subsequent suspension. He held out of training camp, and did not show up until several days before the first regular season game. He was often injured and unavailable when he was needed most. Even though the injuries were not his fault, it was frustrating to the fans. He was a major distraction to the team for all of 2018, when he was less than forthcoming with his intent. Will he show up, won’t he show up? It affected the team, who was tired of being asked about it, and the fans who were tired of reading about it. The money that Bell was asking for seemed rather high, considering that he was rarely available at crunch time (playoffs). In summary, it was a preponderance of things. I believe most Steeler fans do not “hate” Bell, but they are glad that he and all of the drama are gone. He became “not worth the trouble.”

    On a final note, when Bell did not participate in pre-season for the 2017 season, he came back rusty and did not get back into a groove until after about 3-4 games. I disagree with Bell’s assessment of the importance of reps in pre-season, considering his slow start in 2017. In addition, considering that he is with a new offensive line; “they” need the work with him, to learn how to block for him and his delay running style (which is somewhat different from most running backs). I suspect that Bell may struggle early, and this does not bode well for a team that is trying to reverse it’s consistent losing culture.

  13. LBell: “I don’t really necessarily need [preseason reps].”

    Read: “I’ve done this before and was largely responsible for my team’s early season losses and sluggish start.”

  14. Bell might not need the reps, but the Jets O-line could surely use some practice time getting acclimated to Bells unique running style.
    Without the practice time together, I could see where this would flop badly…

  15. I’ve never seen so many people so gleefully predict the demise of an athlete who for all intents and purposes hasn’t done anything on or off the field to warrant it. Bell played out his contract with the Steelers. They couldn’t come to an agreement on a new contract so rather then sign a deal and play under a contract he wasn’t satisfied with he decided to sit out the season and based in his unique circumstances forced his way into free agency. What’s the issue here?

    As far as how he will produce this year Bell plays runningback which is the easiest offensive skill position to pick up a new playbook. He is still only 27 years old so he is still in his prime and on top of being a very good runningback he also is excellent catching the ball out the back field which with a young QB he will likely be doing a lot of. Bell will be ok this year. The only concern I have is he hasn’t played football in over a year so he may get off to a slow start but should pick up as the season goes along.

  16. Ryann252013 Bell did make negative comments about Ben and about management
    when AB was doing his trash talking. And there was the potential that by holding out the whole season he would hurt the team- they were lucky that Conner had a great season. Make no mistake- Bell is all about Bell. he doesn’t sound too eager to play either. All the talk that teams were salivating to sign him that was put out there by Bell and his agent were quite funny- one team, no other significant offers, and not even a winning team at that. And practicing on his own instead of being with and adjusting to a new line and quarterback- really?Should be interesting. Another prima dona.

  17. @wvrocks

    I get it, it’s tough to see a good player walk I won’t debate you on that one seeing as Revis wanted no part of the Jets at one point. But you’re bringing up drug tests 2015 in 2019 when he’s been getting randomly tested year round by the NFL since those failed tests. The only time Bell really had injury issues was when he took that shot from Vontaze Burfict to his knee in 2015. in 2016 he missed the first 3 games due to his suspension from the failed test the year prior and only missed one game in 2017. And to top it all off the Steelers franchise tagged him which he never signed, he had no obligation to show up to the Steelers so if he was that much of a distraction it’s on the Steelers. You guys definitely go after him anytime you see something involving him, it’s weird.

  18. 6thsense10 says: August 14, 2019 at 10:22 am
    *****************************************************
    Have to disagree with your statement “hasn’t done anything on or off the field to warrant it.” Bell missed (suspended) the first 3 games of the 2015 season due to an arrest for Marijuana possession. He missed (suspended) the first 3 games of the 2016 season due to violating the substance abuse policy. On the positive side, he made it through 3 out of 5 seasons with the Steelers, without a drug-related issue. Perhaps he does not receive enough credit for that.

    How will Bell do with the Jets? Don’t forget the importance of an offensive line (blocking) to the success of a running back. Did having arguably the best offensive line, a future Hall-of-Famer QB, and a top-tier receiver on offense (in Pittsburgh) with Bell contribute to his success with running the ball? Those are all now gone, as Bell now plays with a much less talented Offense in New York. I suspect that a running back’s success is significantly impacted by the talent around him; and as a result, opposing teams will game plan around stopping Bell “first.” One of the interesting storylines to watch as this season unfolds.

  19. @wvrocks

    Look man. The Jets had a good run blocking OL last year, there problems were in pass protection. Isaiah Crowell just averaged 4.5 yards a carry behind the same OL.

  20. joenomouth says:
    August 14, 2019 at 10:37 am
    He didn’t play out his contract, Steelers released him
    ——
    And this is part of the reason why there is so much animosity towards Bell. It seems like a number of you don’t even fully understand the dynamics of the situation.

    Bell was Franchise tagged 2 years ago by the Steelers. The Franchise tag is a 1 year contract offer. He signed and played out that contract.

    After he played that contract out Bell was no longer under contract with ANY NFL team.

    The Steelers again offered another Franchise tag contract as well as a long term offer last year. The team and Bell couldn’t come to an agreement so Bell remained unsigned to ANY NFL team all of last season. However due to the CBA the Steelers were able to prevent him from becoming a free agent when they placed the tag on him. Just because a team places a tag on you doesn’t mean you’re under contract with that team. The Franchise tag inly restricts a player’s movement. Untill the franchise tag offer is signed the player is not under contract and Bell never signed it. For all intents and purposes Bells contractual obligations to the Steelers ended after the 2017 NFL season.

  21. @ryann252013

    Sorry, but your explanation on the drug incidents is a “no sell” for me. A player lets down himself, his team, and the fans; when he does that. The Steelers made a commitment to him, and he let everyone down……2 out of 3 years….suspended for 8 games, reduced to 6 games missed. That matters to us (Steeler fans).

    From a business-law standpoint, Bell never honored / fulfilled his contract; refused to play under the franchise tag for a paltry sum of $14.5 million dollars (as per the agreed upon contract between the owners and players), and was eventually released after refusing to play in 2018.

    Steeler fans don’t respect this kind of collective behavior. It’s not “weird.” We just believe that a player should put the team above himself by saying “no” to drugs. Brown violated the drug policy two (2) times in five (years). We also believe a man should honor his contract. Understandably these are old school values that are not shared by all. Hopefully, he does not let you down, as he did us. Good luck

  22. 6thsense10 says:
    August 14, 2019 at 10:22 am
    I’ve never seen so many people so gleefully predict the demise of an athlete who for all intents and purposes hasn’t done anything on or off the field to warrant it.

    ————

    People have been hoping Tom Brady will fail since 2004….. One day I guess they will get their wish and my team might actually have a chance

  23. @wvrocks

    Typical.. “I don’t care about the facts please let me continue with my blind hatred”

    Why are you on a high horse talking down to Jets fans acting like failed tests or missed games don’t matter to them either? lol. The point is you’ve held on to this failed drug test from 3-4 years ago and he hasn’t failed one since. Maybe just maybe Bell isn’t the boogeyman the Steelers faithful desperately hopes he is. The guy has a great family and support system so why is Bell growing up so out of the question for you? if you don’t think his mom and dad are great people I have a bridge to sell you by the way let’s not refute facts.

  24. Still a diva. Never thought it might be good for the rest of the offense to work with him to get timing and moves down pat. Selfish diva.

  25. @ryann252013,

    All kidding aside, the Steelers are not missing Bell at all. His replacement (Conner) has filled in exceptionally well, with nearly identical production. Conner even made it to the “Pro-Bowl” and is an up-and-coming star in the NFL. He is also a lot less expensive, which matters under the salary cap. Finally…here is a fact for you, “The Steelers went from #18 in the league (in the Red Zone) under Bell in 2017, to #1 (in the Red Zone) under Conner in 2018.” Conner is just a better back when it comes to getting the hard-to-get yards in the condensed field that is the red zone.

    Steeler fans understandably feel like a “spurned spouse” by Bell’s unwillingness to resign with the Steelers; a proud and winning organization. We believe that it is an honor to play for our team, that has six (6) Lombardi trophies. Bell disappointed us (as fans) in many ways. You would not necessary understand, as you are not a Steelers fan. It’s not hatred, which is a “very” strong word. All things considered (including the cost against the salary cap), we are better off without Bell. We did fine without him last year, and Conner is just getting started. We also have a really good backup in “Samuel.” Good luck this season, and thanks for the interesting discussion.

  26. Is anyone else wishing he pulls a hammy during the 1st quarter of week 1?

    I fixed it for you with what you were implying. Pats trolls tend to disguise their snarky intentions.

  27. “He didn’t play out his contract, Steelers released him.”
    _______________

    Both things happened. His contract ended and the Steelers tagged him again but he didn’t sign, thus they released him. He cost himself millions in the process but he fulfilled all his contract obligations.

  28. joenomouth says:
    August 14, 2019 at 10:37 am
    He didn’t play out his contract, Steelers released him.
    ——————————————————————————————
    Yes, he did. That’s why they tried to tag him twice.

  29. Hasn’t played for over a year and has also never played in the Jets offense? Nah, no need for actual game reps. Just go in cold week 1, what’s the worst that could happen?

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