Just 2 years into a lucrative 5 years contract, the Jets and Le’Veon Bell are parting ways. With the Jets at 0-5, and the season likely already over, it seemed a trade was likely. However, just like with Fournette earlier this offseason, no teams seemed to offer much of anything. So, despite him being an elite rb just 2-3 years ago, Le’Veon was released by the Jets.
In Pittsburgh, Bell was a perennial OPOY candidate. He was a threat to have 1,000 yards through the air and on the ground every season. He was a 1,000 yard rusher 3 times and did have one year over 2,000 total yards. His patience made him one of the best running backs in the league, and his performances made the Steelers offense that much better.
After 5 excellent season with the Steelers, Bell felt the need to move on. He sat out after contract negotiations did not go his way, and ended up sitting out an entire season. Before the 2019 season, Bell finally made his decision, and signed a monstrous 4 year/$52 million contract with the Jets. There was new hope in New York, with Sam Darnold now having a top tier running back.
Bell’s time in New York has certainly been disappointing for both sides. The Jets had a lot of hope for last season, but finished 7-9 after an awful start. Their season was doomed from the start, beginning 0-4. Bell was not a standout, with just over 1,000 total yards, and a horrid 3.2 yards per carry on the year in 2019.
After this season started similarly, there was little doubt that Bell’s time was quickly coming to an end. For a childhood jets fan, this must have been difficult for him. Coming in with huge expectations, the deal failed for both sides. It certainly did not help Bell’s trust in the organization that the man who recruited him demanded a trade earlier this season.
With Gase still at the helm for now, and minimal talent, things may only get worse. The team could easily go 0-16, and the first overall pick will not be enough to turn them around. The best case scenario may involve starting next year with a new coach and quarterback.
Expect Bell to sign somewhere soon, with the Patriots, Bills, Chiefs, Steelers and Cardinals looking like potential destinations.