Somehow, a single line in a rap has given us the biggest Steelers’ summer news story. There’s been a ton of talk about Le’Veon Bell’s next contract after he rapped this line in his new song, “Focus.”
“I’m at the top and if not I’m the closest, I’ma need 15 a year and they know this.”
Bell even responded to Dave Bryan’s article explaining why him earning $15 million per year seems unlikely.
it's clear to see that your clueless as to what's goin on
— Le'Veon Bell (@LeVeonBell) July 3, 2016
So the debate began. Is Bell worth $15 million per year? Is that his official stance, one he won’t back down from? Does that mean Bell will walk after the season?
For whatever it’s worth, he addressed the last question. As the Twitter conversation began to swirl, one fan asked Bell if he was going to leave the Steelers. He responded.
— Le'Veon Bell (@LeVeonBell) July 5, 2016
Of course, this is the time to remind you – as several did tweeting back at Bell – that Kevin Durant once said he was going to remain with the Oklahoma City Thunder for the rest of his career. It’ll be hard for Durant to keep that promise now that he’s wearing a Warriors’ uniform.
Frankly, I’m surprised this story has gained the traction it has. It is, after all, just a rap lyric. I don’t believe Bell is standing firm on his $15 million asking any more than I believe DMX is going to give it to me.
Sure, Bell would love to be the highest paid back in the league. We all knew that. And that would make his asking price above Adrian Peterson’s $14 million. He believes he’s the best back in the league and there’s certainly a good argument to be made for that. Any reasonable asking price should start that high. You can always lower your demands, you can never raise them.
And if Bell rapping one line about his contract is the most aggressive stance he takes in his contract, I’m downright giddy. Give me that over a holdout anytime. Heck, Hines Ward once held out and it’s barely a footnote in his history. Bell will show up to camp, hopefully fully healthy, and be ready to talk with the team. That’s all that matters.