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Tomlin 'excited and hopeful' as deadline to sign Bell looms

Only two NFL running backs currently make at least $8 million annually on a multi-year deal, in Devonta Freeman ($8.25 million) and LeSean McCoy ($8 million).


Reuters United States
Updated: 16-07-2018 08:50 IST
Tomlin 'excited and hopeful' as deadline to sign Bell looms

Only two NFL running backs currently make at least $8 million annually on a multi-year deal, in Devonta Freeman ($8.25 million) and LeSean McCoy ($8 million). (Image Credit: Twitter)

As the deadline to sign running back Le'Veon Bell to a long-term deal nears, Pittsburgh Steelers coach Mike Tomlin is optimistic that the team can reach an agreement with its star running back.

"Obviously we want to get a deal done, he wants to get a deal done; everybody has said that," Tomlin said in a television interview with WAVY Channel 10 in Norfolk, Va. "Now it's just about the negotiators getting into a room and doing what it is they need to do. I'm excited and hopeful. Hopefully we'll have some exciting news before Monday."

However, there are still hurdles to clear before Bell and the Steelers reach an end to their two-year contract dispute. According to ESPN, the Steelers and Bell will continue talking up until the 4 p.m. ET deadline on Monday evening, but they are not close to a deal at this time and an agreement will be challenging.

Last summer, Bell also sought a long-term deal after being franchise tagged, to remain with the team that drafted him in the second round of the 2013 NFL draft, but the two sides could not agree on terms. Bell skipped training camp last summer until eventually signing to play on $12.12 million franchise tag on Sept. 4.

If Bell doesn't receive an offer that fits his preferences, he is prepared to play on this year's tag, which is worth $14.5 million. He has yet to sign or report to any of the Steelers' offseason workouts this summer. He cannot be fined for missing any mandatory practices until he signs his franchise tender.

Only two NFL running backs currently make at least $8 million annually on a multi-year deal, in Devonta Freeman ($8.25 million) and LeSean McCoy ($8 million).

In 2017, Bell earned All-Pro honors after he rushed for 1,291 yards on an NFL-leading 321 carries, caught 85 passes for 655 yards and scored 11 total touchdowns. For his career, Bell has 7,996 scrimmage yards, the most since the 1970 NFL-AFL merger in a player's first five seasons.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

COUNTRY : United States

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