Oh, how the mighty have fallen.
After what looked to be a relatively promising career with the Pittsburgh Steelers before coming off the rails following a tense contract negotiation that saw him sit out the 2018 season before signing with the New York Jets, former NFL running back Le’Veon Bell’s career is seemingly over — at least for now.
A rapper away from the game of football, Bell is set to embark on a new path, remaining in athletics as he chases a boxing career. Yep, you read that right.
Bell, who was one of the top running backs in football from 2014 through 2017, is walking away from the game for time being to “focus on boxing,” he announced Tuesday, ending any perceived speculation about what was next in the once promising NFL career. He’s aiming to get his boxing career off the ground on July 30 at Crypto.com Arena in Los Angeles against…Adrian Peterson.
My, oh my, how the mighty have truly fallen.
Speaking Tuesday at a pre-fight press conference to hype up the has-been matchup between two former NFL running backs inside the ring, Bell stated that he’s not playing football in 2022 to singularly focus on his boxing journey.
“It’s been a challenge I’ve been willing to accept, something I took on,” Bell said at the presser, hosted by event promoter Social Gloves, according to a story from NFL.com. “Boxing is something that, you know, they always say it’s something you can’t play boxing. Last year, I almost sat out the whole year to try to focus on boxing because I kind of knew that was what I wanted to transition to. This year, I know I’m not going to be playing this year because I want to focus on boxing. So, this transition for me has kind of been like, I guess, another opportunity for me. I’m just ready to showcase what I’m about.
“This is not just a one-off. This is, I guess like my introduction to kind of show what I’ll be doing and how I’ll be going about myself. Just an intro.”
Bell sounds like a guy desperate for attention after his star burned out so quickly in the NFL after leaving the Steelers following the messy contract dispute.
Now, he’s not even getting a crack at the NFL, instead hoping to become a professional boxer at 30 years old.
Make no mistake: Bell is a great athlete overall, but boxing isn’t something you just pick up and run with in hopes of becoming a pro, especially at this point in one’s life. Bell was never short on confidence though, and believes that he can do it, stating that the celebrity match against Peterson isn’t a gimmick, and that he’s been boxing for some time now.
Yeah, I’m sure Bell sat out early in the 2021 season because he wanted to see how far boxing could take him. Realistically, it was because he had no suitors. Bell’s a master spin artist; he’ll always control the message and try to spin things positively for himself, even when facts state otherwise.
The real reason he’s going to “pursue” a boxing career is because he knows his NFL career is over. His talents have diminished on the field, and teams simply aren’t willing to take on an aging running back with an attitude problem, one that consistently pops up no matter where he is, especially on social media.
Who knows how Bell’s career would have turned out had he signed the lucrative four-year deal with the Steelers that he was twice offered before eventually signing a four-year, $52.5 million deal with the New York Jets in March 2019. He lost out on a lot of money with that decision, which led to him bouncing around the league with the Kansas City Chiefs, Baltimore Ravens and Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
He’s learned the hard way he made a mistake, and now he’s doing what he can to try and recoup some losses, including going into the boxing ring in an effort to make cash fast.
Oh, how the mighty sure have fallen.