Steelers, Bell fail to reach deal; RB will play on franchise tag

Contract negotiations between the Pittsburgh Steelers and star running back Le’Veon Bell are down to the wire. “We will resume our efforts to address his contract situation following the 2017 season”. He has until 4 p.m. ET Monday to sign a long-term contract, avoiding the tag designation. He has not yet signed his one-year tender after the Steelers placed the franchise tag on him in March, so he would not be subject to fines, according to NBC Sports ProFootballTalk.

Both sides have valid points in this conflict. Bell stayed away from offseason workouts while recovering from groin surgery. Bell started 2015 and 2016 on the NFL’s suspended list for violations of the league’s substance abuse policy.

When Bell is on the field, he is brilliant.

Bell rushed for 1,268 yards and seven touchdowns, adding another 616 yards and two scores through the air, in 12 games for the Steelers last season.

KDKA’s Bob Pompeani says Bell can be franchised again next season.

NFL Network ranked Bell the No. 9 overall player in its 2017 rankings. Bell wants to be compensated not just for running the ball, but also paid in line with his pass-catching ability. The Steelers locker room named Bell their 2016 MVP.