Steelers Will Let Le’Veon Bell Become an Unrestricted Free Agent

Le'Veon Bell with Jets in 2017. Photo by Trask Smith/CSM/REX/Shutterstock

Pittsburgh Steelers’ All-Pro running back Le’Veon Bell is heading towards unrestricted free agency. Steelers’ general manager Kevin Colbert confirmed that the team won’t be using any tags on the 27-year-old which could stop him from becoming a free agent.

“Le’Veon is still a great player. We can’t afford to use any other type of tags,” – Colbert told reporters. “Le’Veon will be an unrestricted free agent at the start of the new league year.”

This Steelers’ decision was immediately welcomed by Bell himself, who posted an interesting tweet shortly after.

After being unable to reach an agreement about a long term contract with the Steelers in the past two offseasons, Le’Veon Bell decided to sit out the entire 2018. He refused to sign a $14.5 million franchise tag, wanting to preserve his body and retain his value so he could sign a lucrative contract with another team.

Steelers’ reportedly briefly considered tagging Bell once again in order to trade him or have the opportunity to match the contract offers from other teams, but ended up abandoning the idea. They will still get a compensatory pick in 2020 when the player signs with another team. 

More than half of NFL teams will be looking into the possibility of adding Le’Veon Bell, but there is just a handful of teams with a cap space to pay him the kind of money he wants. Among those teams are Indianapolis Colts, New York Jets, Oakland Raiders and Buffalo Bills.