The Baltimore Ravens have been looking for running back help after losing two of their top three backs in JK Dobbins and Justice Hill to season-ending injuries.
“Having lost RBs JK Dobbins and Justice Hill to season-ending injuries, the Ravens are signing veteran Le’Veon Bell to their practice squad, he is likely to be added to their 52-man roster when ready.” Per Adam Schefter of ESPN.
Return Of Le’Veon Bell
The “Charm City” birds are getting help from a former foe. In what has to be considered a surprising move B-More has signed former Pittsburgh Steelers All-Pro Le’Veon Bell.
They say desperate times call for desperate measures and this move wreaks of desperation. With injuries having depleted the Ravens’ RB corps, Bell and veteran Devonta Freeman were given looks by the team.
But, here’s the caveat. Baltimore signed Bell to the practice squad. This move is to assess Bell’s physical and mental condition before he grabs one of the active 53-man roster spots.
they motivate me by sayin I can’t…part 2 pic.twitter.com/pcwLTOEEyq
— Le'Veon Bell (@LeVeonBell) September 7, 2021
Bell wasn’t guaranteed a spot on the team’s 53-man roster. That’s an indication of how far the former All-Pro and MVP candidate has fallen since his 2018 holdout and eventual fallout with the Steelers over his contract.
The former All-Pro has averaged a feeble 3.4 yards per cary with just 1,117 rushing yards the past two seasons. Bell averaged nearly 1,600 total yards from scrimmage per season in his first five NFL seasons, prior to his holdout in 2018.
Bell’s known for being outspoken and criticizing people if he feels he’s been wronged. He and former Steelers great Antonio Brown both left on bad terms with the organization, arguing over finances and respect.
Some feel Bell is unjustly crticized for taking a stand against the establishment. Others have called him selfish.
Here’s a quick chronology of Bell’s football experience since 2014.
August 2014 – DUI and marijuana possession – Suspended
August 2016 – Violated the NFL’s substance abuse policy – Suspended
2017 – First contract holdout
2018 – Second contract holdout – Declined Steelers final offer
March 2019 – Signed to play behind the worst offensive line in the NFL
March 2019 – Critical of Ben Roethlisberger
October 2020 – Demanded a trade – Released
June 2021 – Disses Andy Reid
“I’ll never play for Andy Reid again… I’d retire first
Potential Career Revival
Despite the baggage, his talent is undeniable. Bell struggled with the Jets, running behind a porous offensive line for a team headed towards the No. 2 pick in the NFL Draft.
He can start again, with an opportunity to be one of Lamar Jackson’s main targets. Bell could serve as a dangerous weapon for Baltimore if he can regain his dual-threat effectiveness.
The Ravens need some help behind presumptive starter Gus Edwards. Expect Bell to rise up the depth chart.