After skipping the entire 2018 season with the Pittsburgh Steelers, running back Le’Veon Bell is ready to prove to New York Jets fans he’s worth the hype.
Last year, Le’Veon Bell bet on himself, sitting out the entire season over a contract dispute with the Pittsburgh Steelers. He signed a free-agent deal with the New York Jets this offseason, and he’s ready to finally hit the field this fall.
The Jets paid a pretty penny to put Bell in the backfield, in an era where running backs are finding it harder and harder to make big money on long-term extensions.
Bell knows the expectations will be high, but he plans to give Jets fans something worth waiting for once the 2019 season rolls around (via team reporter Ethan Greenberg):
I want to go out there and be my best self. I’ve been working over the course of the year for this moment. I know a lot of people are excited to see me and have a high ceiling for me. I have a high ceiling for myself. Everything that people are expecting from me, I want to be able to do that plus more. A lot of people expect a lot from me and I expect more from myself.
I think as long as I stay on this course and continue to do things the right way, I’ll be ready to give everybody what they want to see.
One of the most versatile and dynamic offensive weapons in the entire NFL, Bell tallied over 1,800 total yards in each of his previous two seasons prior to sitting out 2018.
He joins a Jets offense already buzzing with young talent, starting with second-year quarterback Sam Darnold, the No. 3 overall pick in the 2018 NFL draft. With a talented group of pass-catchers that includes Robby Anderson, Quincy Enunwa, Chris Herndon and fellow free-agent addition Jamison Crowder, the Jets offense could be primed for a breakout season with Bell added to the mix.
Bell will also have the advantage of playing for new head coach Adam Gase, who is well known for deploying an aggressive, attacking scheme that loves to create mismatches and big plays. Jets fans should expect Gase to take full advantage of Bell’s unique skill set, putting him in position to succeed in many different ways from all over the field.
Bell’s decision to miss last season, and the new deal he signed this offseason, have put massive expectations on his back for this season. But the veteran Pro Bowler is ready to deliver in his first season with the Gang Green.
The Jets haven’t made the playoffs in nearly a decade, and Bell was no stranger to the postseason during his tenure with the Steelers. Jets fans will be hoping his talent and experience help put them in position to make a playoff run this year.