When the New York Jets signed running back Le’Veon Bell to a massive four-year, $52.5 Million deal this past offseason, they appeared to find the workhorse back needed to help take pressure off of the young, yet promising, Sam Darnold.
However, not much has gone right in the Bell-Jets marriage since the day that the running back put ink to paper on that contract. Shortly after the Bell signing, New York fired the man that helped bring Bell to town, then-General Manager Mike Maccagnan.
Over the past few months, there’s been an ever apparent rift between Bell and head coach Adam Gase, although the majority of that issue appears to lean heavily on the latter. Yet, Bell’s major dip in production doesn’t help his case.
The return on investment appears as though it will not be enough to guarantee Bell’s roster spot with the Jets heading into 2020. At least, that’s what we’ve gathered from current Jets GM Joe Douglas’ comments at his most recent press conference.
Jets Will Listen to Trade Offers for Le’Veon Bell
New York Jets General Manager Joe Douglas took to the podium on New Year’s Eve to discuss the Jets’ future plans for the upcoming 2020 NFL season. Not shockingly, Douglas was swiftly asked by a member of the media whether his once-elite running back would be subject to trade talks this offseason. Douglas didn’t hold back with his response on the prospect of Bell being one and done in New York, stating “if teams call, I will listen.”
While Douglas sugar-coated his statements, praising Bell’s work ethic and the respect he has for him as a teammate to the other Jets players, that was quickly shunned by the fact that the Jets are willing to move on from a player who they, less than a season ago, handed $52.5 Million to.
Le’Veon Bell & Adam Gase Were Doomed From the Start
When Adam Gase was hired as the New York Jets head coach this past offseason, many lauded about his offensive expertise. People believed Gase would help take the team’s young signal-caller Sam Darnold and help him unearth his untapped potential. Those same people also felt that Gase would work wonders with an elite offensive weapon such as Bell.
However, if you endured a Dolphins game when Gase was the team’s head coach, or even worse, rostered one of his skill-players on your fantasy team, you know that Gase has been detrimental to the success of some of his more talented playmakers, most specifically at the running back position.
We’ve all seen what Kenyan Drake has blossomed into since arriving in Arizona. While his stellar performances may come as a shock to some, he actually showed the same type of burst and ability while in Miami. However, Gase nearly single-handedly ruined Drake’s tenure with the team, continuously opting to play less talented players ahead of him.
This is the same coach that chose to deactivate a then-healthy, and eventually dominant, Jay Ajayi in favor of a washed-up Arian Foster in 2016. The same Foster who, two weeks into the season, decided to call it quits, abruptly retiring from the NFL.
Reports have swirled since Bell’s arrival that Gase did not want the team to sign the running back this past offseason. The way that he and the front office have conducted themselves since Bell’s signing adds further fuel to that fire.
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