Le’Veon Bell is leaving New York, but not like many Jets fans hoped for
Just like that, the Bell rings on Le’Veon’s time in the Big Apple.
On Tuesday night, the New York Jets elected to release the three-time Pro Bowl following his recent comments towards Head Coach Adam Gase. The news was first reported by ESPN’s Adam Schefter.
“After having conversations with Le’Veon and his agent and exploring potential trade options over the past couple of days, we have made the decision to release Le’Veon,” the team said in a statement. “The Jets organization appreciates Le’Veon’s efforts during his time here and we know he worked hard to make significant contributions to this team. We believe this decision is in the best interests of both parties and wish him future success.”
Limited production leads to Bell’s bellowing
Speculation of Bell’s departure from the Jets’ offense began to grew Tuesday afternoon when rumors suggested the team wanted to trade him before the NFL deadline. Following the Jets’ 30-10 loss to the Cardinals, social media was able to track down Bell “liking” several tweets, suggesting he should be traded due to his limited role in Gase’s system.
“I hate that that’s the route we go with all this instead of just talking about it, but it seems that’s the way guys want to do it nowadays,” Gase said when asked on the situation.
Bell, who signed a four-year, $52.5 million last offseason, has disappointed in his own manner the past two seasons. Once revered as the league’s top dual-threat weapon, Bell saw career lows in rushing yards (789), rushing touchdowns (3), yards per carry (3.2), and total scrimmage yards (1,250). He also missed three games in 2020 due to a hamstring injury suffered in Week 1.
The Jets will now be left with $15 million in dead cap for the remainder of the 2020 season. In 2021, they’ll owe Bell another $4 million. In 18 games for the Jets, the 28-year-old earned $28 million for limited production.
This won’t be the first, or last time Gase has caused confrontation with his players. In July, All-Pro safety Jamal Adams requested a trade following his disgruntlement with with the organization. During last season, the problems between Gase and Leonard Williams ultimately led the franchise trading the former first-rounder across the stadium to the New York Giants.
In 19 total games with the franchise, Bell will finish with 863 rushing yards, 500 receding yards and four total touchdowns.