The New York Jets reportedly have some level of interest in possibly trading for Pittsburgh Steelers running back Le’Veon Bell.
According to Manish Mehta of the NY Daily News on Monday, the Jets, according to sources of his, have reached out to the Steelers to express interest in possibly trading for Bell, who has yet to report to sign his franchise tag this year. According to Mehta, however, the Jets have not made a concrete offer to the Steelers for Bell yet.
As we have already mentioned several times in several different posts concerning Bell, the running back cannot be traded until he first shows up and signs his franchise tag tender. When and if that happens and if Bell is ultimately traded, one would think the Steelers would expect to receive at least a third-round selection in the 2019 NFL Draft as compensation.
As far as the Jets go, they don’t currently posses a second-round selection in the 2019 NFL Draft. They do, however, currently own two third-round selections in next year’s draft. The Jets also currently have more than enough salary cap space this year to afford Bell and the rest of his 2018 tag amount if they were to trade for him.
Even if the Jets were to trade for Bell, there is no guarantee they would have him for more than just the remainder of the 2018 season because they won’t be able to sign him to a long-term contract until the offseason gets underway should they indeed trade for him. In short, they would run the risk of losing him to a higher bidder in free agency in 2019 and only receive, at most, third-round compensatory draft pick value in return.
The Jets are currently 1-2 and will face the Jacksonville Jaguars on the road in Week 4 before hosting the Denver Broncos and Indianapolis Colts the following two weeks. The Jets leading rusher through three games played is running back Isaiah Crowell, who has 171 yards and 4 touchdowns on 38 carries. Crowell has also caught 4 passes for 21 yards so far this season.
A report from Adam Schefter of ESPN stating the Steelers were now interested in possibly trading Bell surfaced Sunday morning. The Steelers have yet to confirm or deny that report, however.