Kevin Colbert. Omar Khan. Le’Veon Bell and agent. Come in, sit down, I’ll break out the good paper plates. We gotta have a talk.
As you know, by 4 PM today, a new deal has to get done with Bell. And yes, I said has to. Posturing is normal, part of the dance between team and agent. But Kevin, I know you aren’t a good dancer. We have two left feet. Let’s wrap this song up.
Contracts can be tricky. There’s no denying that. I’m sure the general language of the deal is already in place, or easy to agree upon. The years, overall money, first year base salary. The devil is in the details. That’s the hard part of any new deal.
But let’s take advantage of the opportunity. You, the Steelers’ organization, want Bell back. Bell, we know you want to stay in Pittsburgh. This isn’t the mess Washington is in with Kirk Cousins, a front office unable to make up their mind of what to do with him and in turn, making the player question if he wants to stay in town (get out, by the way, Kirk). Here, it’s a difficult negotiation but one done in good faith. There’s a big, clear common goal.
It’s a situation that no one should overthink. Elite players stay in Pittsburgh. Ben Roethlisberger never even came close to sniffing free agency. Antonio Brown got done as promised. And Bell, in talent, is in the same ballpark. Elite. Unique.
Pittsburgh, don’t risk the chance Bell tests free agency. It’ll be a red mark on your resume, Colbert. And Bell, don’t take the risk of playing through the tag where injury – there’s a history – can wreck your leverage. Your price tag isn’t going to be any higher than it is now; even $10.5 million per season will do laps around the field.
Not getting an extension would be an obvious mistake. For both sides. Continue to prove why the Steelers have one of the top organizations in football. They identify and keep top talent at the game’s most important positions. And Bell, you know the grass is rarely greener outside of Pittsburgh. Chat up William Gay. He’ll clue you in. Money is nice until you’re on a 4-12 49ers team.
It’s Monday morning and word is, you guys aren’t that much closer to getting a deal done. But we both know these deals can get done quickly. Like any college student, there’s no bigger motivator than an impending deadline.
Ok, it’s time to get down to business. Let me clear the table for you guys. I’ll grab you a pen, Le’Veon. There’s a contract that needs your signature.