The Steelers are 3.5-point favorites at Cleveland in Week 1 (opened at -6.5) and remain 10-1 to win the Super Bowl.
The Steelers hoped he would do the same this year, but he and his agent apparently had different plans now that he's nearly certain to hit free agency next offseason.
The team has stayed unified in its approach to Bell, saying it's focused on players who are in uniform, but will welcome back the All-Pro. "We'd like to have him out there, but we've got guys who can make plays for us". "I just hate it came to this".
Tell us how you really feel. That opportunity in an explosive Steelers offense has too much upside to ignore, especially if Bell's holdout lingers.
That time came and passed.
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Steelers fans don't want to hear it, but it's a reality they may have to face very shortly: Le'Veon Bell could hold out until Week 10. They'll see these Steelers - Bell or not - for the first time in Week 6. Offensive linemen Ramon Foster and Maurkice Pouncey both weighed in on their teammate's continued holdout. Why let your agent say this?
Bakari replied: "Well, there you go".
The whole thing is kind of weird, really, and after a prolonged absence, it sounds as if no one really wants to talk about it or speculate how it will end.
McDonald has been sitting on a ton of upside ever since he was drafted by the 49ers in the second round five years ago. "You can't play football like that". In a series of tweets, the former National Football League linebacker addressed the matter, chiding the negative comments made by Bell's teammates. Will a team such as the New York Jets try to swoop in and trade for Bell with tensions seemingly at an all-time high?
Bell, who also held out previous year due to his contract situation, returned just before the start of the season and was able to play in their opening game, which was also against the Browns.