With Kirk Cousins and Trumaine Johnson extensively expected to participate in out their next consecutive franchise tags, all eyes will be on the Pittsburgh Steelers‘ negotiations with Le’Veon Bell that are pressing from the 4 p.m. ET deadline.

Franchise tags are normally a deadline-fueled standoff, and this seems to be no distinct.

The Steelers would choose to entire a long-term offer with Bell, but they will want to retain the cash realistic.

He’s expected to participate in on a $12.1-million tag or an extension with a for each-12 months average of a little something shut to that.

Possibly way, Bell will soon be the league’s highest-paid out back, surpassing LeSean McCoy‘s $8 million for each 12 months.

Right here are a several critical themes encompassing Bell’s negotiation…

  1. * The Triple Bs: Internally, the Steelers want to retain their individual triangle offense of Ben Roethlisberger, Antonio Brown and Le’Veon Bell with each other for a though. That is a aspect in negotiations. But though Significant Ben and Brown are taking part in on contracts truly worth up to $168 million, Bell was arguably the ideal participant of the 3 very last 12 months though averaging 157 total yards for each game, third-most at any time for a tailback. That should aid Bell’s negotiations as a likely offset of previous suspensions and injuries.

  2. * Last but not least wholesome: Bell has recovered from an offseason groin injuries and should be ready for teaching camp. The Steelers want to maintain Bell’s wellbeing but don’t be expecting them to restrict his carries — he touched the ball 28 occasions for each game very last 12 months, normally carrying the offense in the system. Bell has skipped playoff action thanks to injuries in 3 straight years, but the Steelers don’t contemplate him brittle. At age 25, Bell should hold up for at least the 1st several years of a mega offer.

  3. * ‘(The Steelers) know I’m not a bonehead’: Which is what Bell at the time told me about his back-to-back drug suspensions. Bell thinks his challenges with marijuana are at the rear of him. But the Steelers can protect themselves just in case by loading significantly of Bell’s cash into a signing bonus. That way, a participant under the league’s substance-abuse program must pay back back a portion of the bonus for every game suspended. The Steelers normally benefit from massive signing bonuses to stay in command of the cash.

  4. * Both of those sides have bargaining chips: The $12.1 million tag is a huge number for a jogging back, and in 2018 it mushrooms to $14 million. The totals enable Bell because a long-term offer would be extra manageable than $26 million in excess of two years of franchise tagging. The Steelers can level to their offensive creation in Bell’s absence. The Steelers went 10-5 the very last two seasons though Bell was harm or suspended, a stretch through which DeAngelo Williams scored 14 touchdowns. The Steelers know how very good Bell is, but they also have a large-level offensive line.

  5. * Locker home reception: Just one thing that resonates in the Steelers’ locker home is that Bell will work harder than just about any one and was unanimously the staff MVP very last 12 months. A faction of the locker home could possibly be perplexed if other critical gamers get paid out and Bell does not. Teams don’t negotiate as a result of the locker home, of training course, but the gamers view these factors intently.

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