Hall of Fame running back Jerome Bettis has been very vocal this offseason when it comes to his former team and running back Le’Veon Bell potentially being able to work out a long-term contract extension prior to the July 16 deadline. In a recent interview with TMZ, Bettis again delivered a message to both sides in which he stated it’s in the best interest for both parties to get a contract done now.
“Neither one of you are as good by yourself as you are together,” Bettis said.
After then saying that the Pittsburgh Steelers need to understand that Bell is a player that provides their offense a duel-threat and one who present opposing defenses with an ultimate mismatch, Bettis then had a specific message for Bell.
“Le’Veon, you’re not going to be as good going somewhere else because they’re not going to have the offensive line, they’re not going to have the quarterback, the receivers that they have in Pittsburgh,” Bettis told TMZ. “You have a full complement around you that allows you to be as great as you want to be.”
While Bell did turn 26 years old in February, Bettis told TMZ that the Steelers shouldn’t let his age be a concern to them when it comes to getting a long-term contract extension done with the running back.
“I don’t think that a four or five-year contract is anything that the Steelers have to worry about in terms of his age because he’s going to be able to produce into his early 30s,” Bettis said.
We obviously don’t know right now how contract talks are going between Bell and the Steelers and while the former seemed somewhat optimistic a deal would get done prior to the July 16 deadline during a recent interview, that could just be wishful thinking on his part. Should the two sides ultimately fail to come to an agreement in less than two weeks from today, 2018 will almost certainly be Bell’s final season in Pittsburgh.
“I think both the team and Le’Veon have to understand that it’s in their best interests to make a deal that makes sense for both of them because they’re only going to get better together,” Bettis said.