After a down year and tension with head coach Adam Gase, the New York Jets are open to trading star running back Le’Veon Bell.
It appears the Le’Veon Bell trade rumors aren’t going away any time soon. NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reported Monday that the New York Jets have not “slammed the door” on the idea of trading their star running back.
From @NFLTotalAccess: Some position players who could be dealt for the right price include #Jets RB Le'Veon Bell and #Lions CB Darius Slay, both of whom were the subject of trade talks at the deadline during the season. pic.twitter.com/LMjII1Yrx8
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) February 18, 2020
“One of the names that came up right around the start of the trade deadline period was Le’Veon Bell, the New York Jets’ starting running back,” Rapoport said. “Who not only struggled this year, but has a massive contract. A fully guaranteed contract worth $13.5 million. The Jets have never slammed the door on potentially moving him, though it does seem that if they wanted to move him they’d have to eat some of the money. It remains to be seen if that would even be possible to move him.”
He also mentioned that even if New York consumes some of the contract that the team will still be looking for the “right price,” which may be lofty.
Bell signed that contract with New York in free agency last offseason, after, of course, he sat out the entire 2018 season while holding out for a new contract with the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Before sitting out in 2018, Bell was arguably the best running back in the entire NFL. In five seasons, he was named to three pro bowls and twice was named first-team all-pro. In both of All-Pro seasons, he topped at least 1,900 all-purpose yards.
Despite his past success, Bell struggled in his first year with the Jets. In 15 games, he ran for just 789 yards and three touchdowns, while adding 461 receiving yards and one touchdown reception.
The stats may be well below average for Bell’s standards, but a large part of that was due to poor offensive line play. Many believe if the Jets rebuild their line this offseason that the once star running back can be dominant once again.
Entering his first offseason as general manager, Joe Douglas has a difficult task facing him. Figuring out whether or not Bell fits into New York’s long term plans.