With the 2017 NFL Draft now over and the bulk of the heavy lifting done with regard to the roster building process now out of the way, it is easier to begin to take stock of where the Pittsburgh Steelers stand at certain positions, and what the implications might be of a variety of moves for certain players.
And take stock is what we shall do, as every move has ramifications up and down the roster, so now we will take a look at some specific players and see how the team’s moves during the course of the offseason thus far, and more specifically since the draft, have sent their stock rising, falling, or breaking even.
Stock Value: Postponed
This may be the most literal case that we have dealt with to date over the past two years since we have begun our offseason stock watch tracker. Le’Veon Bell had yesterday as a deadline to work out a long-term deal with the Steelers and it didn’t get done. That means that he will have to wait until next year to try to get a long-term deal, in Pittsburgh or elsewhere.
In other words, the evaluation of his value, in terms of dollars, has literally been postponed until next offseason. In the interim, he will be playing under the pre-determined value of the franchise tag, which is somewhat of a remnant of a ghost running back market that no longer exists since the end of last season.
Obviously, the Steelers believe that he is worth the $12.1 million for this season that he will be getting whenever he actually ends up signing his franchise tender. If they did not, they would never have tagged him in the first place.
But that is only a temporary solution, and the two parties were unable to work out a proper answer in time after the 4 PM deadline came and went yesterday, so we must wait until at least January, most likely, and probably later, perhaps all the way until the March free agency period, to see this resolved.
One could argue that even his on-field value has been postponed due to the fact that he has not been a participant in offseason activities yet as he recovers from groin surgery. In all likelihood, he will only see brief action in the third preseason game, if that, which was the same story as last season when he was working his way back from a knee injury.
What we do know is where Bell left off, and he was doing some historic things with his feet before his left the Patriots game with the groin injury that has had him sidelined for the most part since then.