What Free Agency will look like for Le’veon Bell: Predictions

It’s official. Le’veon Bell will not play for the Steelers in 2018 and there is a very slim chance he will return in 2019. As a Steelers fan, I hate to see him leave the team like this. I believe he’s a generational talent and hoped for years that his talent was the missing piece to our Super Bowl puzzle. However, I respect his business decision and am already  looking forward to 2019 so I can watch the best RB in the league play football again.

Predictions:

1.  Bell will sign with a team that has an established franchise QB

I think Bell is passionate about winning a Super Bowl, but he obviously wants a ton of money. There are teams that could blow Bell away with an offer strictly based on available cap space (Colts, Jets, Bills, Browns), but I think Le’Veon would be willing to take a smaller offer to play with a competitor (as long as he thinks its fair market value). I think he will value having a franchise QB that he can trust to perform at a high level during the last years of his prime. The window is closing for Bell to win a Super Bowl, and if he gets the long-term security he expects from this holdout, this could be the last contract he signs in the NFL.

Teams I could see Le’Veon signing with:

 Colts

Eagles

Texans

Raiders

Ravens

2.  Bell’s holdout will have been worth it

Le’veon did an incredible job at staying relevant during the 2018 season. For someone who did not play a single snap of football, he was the most discussed topic from the preseason through week 11. I think forfeiting $14.5M will be painful to his wallet, but the contract he receives in free agency will set a new standard in the league. I think that he will average at-least $17M per year over the first two years of his contract, but I’m not sure that it will all be guaranteed.

I could see him receiving a few different contract structures:

5 years, $74.5M; $40M guaranteed – most likely front-loaded with around $17M in the first two years and $13.5M in the final three years with potential roster and performance incentives.

3 years (option after 1), $48M; $31M guaranteed, $15M signing bonus w/ $11M salary each year heavily focused on incentives that could reach up to 15M/yr.


 

These are knee-jerk reactions to the news that Le’Veon Bell didn’t report by the deadline on November 13th. I might come back and post new predictions as more news is released, but these are my initial projections of Le’Veon’s value and where he might end up in 2019.

 

 

 

Advertisements
Categories: NFL

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s