Bell threatens to sit or retire if franchise tagged again

Steelers' Le'Veon Bell says he'd consider sitting out season, retiring if he's franchise tagged for second straight season

Steelers' Le'Veon Bell says he'd consider sitting out season, retiring if he's franchise tagged for second straight season

Bell suggested that he's prepared to sit out next season, or possibly even retire, if the Steelers use their franchise tag on him for the second straight year, ESPN.com reports. He will be a free agent after the season, unless the Steelers sign him to a long-term contract or place the franchise tag on Bell for the second straight year. Bell sat out all of training camp while he trained on his own in Miami. Bell said he would consider retiring, and if he did sit out a year, there likely wouldn't be a comeback in his future. At 25 years old, Bell has rushed for 5,336 yards and 35 touchdowns in 62 career games.

He said his contract expectations are about being valued and setting the standard for players in his position. He averages 4.3 yards per carry. He was also highly impactful as a receiver out of the backfield, leading all running backs with a career-high 85 catches for 655 receiving yards and two touchdowns.

The timing of those comments wasn't exactly great as the Steelers are preparing to face the Jaguars in a divisional-round playoff game on Sunday, but Bell walked them back shortly afterwards via Twitter. I know what I do and what I bring to the table. Teams can tag a player between February 20 and March 6, after which they would have until July 16 to work out a long-term deal. Teams are eligible to use that designation between February 20 and March 6, and then they have until July 16th at 4 p.m. ET to hammer out a new long-term deal. "I'm not going to settle for anything", Bell said. "I'm not going out here getting the ball 400 times if I'm not getting what I feel I'm valued at". While the Steelers could prevent Bell from playing for another team by using the tag, they can't force him to play under it either. The Steelers have the ability to tag Bell once again this offseason, but that is not something the running back would be on board with.

"I've made a lot of money, I'm happy where I'm at, I've got a good family - I don't really need to play football", Bell said. "Right now, I'm just kind of doing it because I love it. If I was a free agent and they let me go, be a free agent, then yeah, I'm going to go explore free agency, test the market".

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