Le’Veon Bell needs to force his way out of Jets
The Le’Veon Bell experiment with the New York Jets needs to end.
The marriage seemed arranged by money and doomed to failure from the start. Before even playing a single down with Gang Green, reports circulated head coach Adam Gase didn’t want Bell. The former All-Pro running back ultimately suited up for 15 games last year. Although only carried the ball 245 times for 789 yards while notching 66 receptions for 461 yards and four total touchdowns.
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Bell, 28, is entering the tail end of his rime years. He’s saddled with three more years on his contract. Although, he’s going to be out of New York after this campaign one way or the other. A look at his deal shows New York can move on from Bell after this season and only have to end $4 million in dead money come 2021 and another $2 million in ’22 before the books are wiped clean. All told, the final two years would save New York $22.5 million with a release or trade.
However, Bell shouldn’t wait to spend another forgettable season on what could be the worst team in the league as he’s clearly frustrated with the current situation. Instead, he should attempt to professionally force his way out, working through his agent. Additionally, he could let the team know privately that his role in the offense is going to cause contention.
General manager Joe Douglas didn’t sign Bell to his current pact. After moving All-Pro safety Jamal Adams, he could be willing to do the same with Bell. The running back isn’t going to bring back the same haul as Adams — or even anything close. However if New York can secure the divorce and maybe add a late-round pick, it’s not a bad move.
Moving Le’Veon Bell this year would essentially be a financial wash, but what does it truly matter in what is about to be a lost season? If the Jets were smart, they’d showcase Bell through September and October — should he start the season with the team — and then move him to the highest bidder at the trade deadline.
Whether a trade happens or not remains to be seen, but the Jets have reason to move on from a player their head coach has never embraced, and Bell has every reason to be done with the franchise which paid him, but has done nothing to let him flourish.