Growing Odds Le’Veon Bell Stays in New York, Sign With Giants

Giants among favorites to sign Le'Veon Bell

Getty Ex-Jets RB Le'Veon Bell

In the least striking news of an otherwise uncanny NFL season, the Le’Veon Bell-Adam Gase marriage didn’t pan out… shocker. The three-time Pro Bowler was released by the New York Jets on Tuesday after the team failed to find a trade partner for the running back.

Even far less shocking than Bell’s newfound employment status is the slew of fans that took to Twitter after news broke to voice their opinion on why their team is the best fit for Bell’s services. Big Blue fandom was no different, as the Giants’ Saquon Barkley-less backfield could certainly use an influx of talent.

Turns out those Giants fans may have a leg to stand on, as BetOnline released their updated odds on Wednesday for what team Bell will play for next. While not favorited, the G-Men do find themselves tied with NFC East rivals, the Washington Football Team, with +1200 odds of landing the running back, Per OddShark.

Escape From New York? Or Jet to the Next Closest Locker Room?

Is Bell the player he was during his terrific run in Pittsburgh? The eye-test and statistics would certainly say not. However, we must take all of that with a grain of salt, as having Adam Gase as a head coach is the equivalent of the kiss of death for a talented playmaker in the NFL. Look no further than Kenyan Drake, Devante Parker and Ryan Tannehill for example, the latter of which is fresh off his second four-touchdown performance over his past three games.

It’s no secret that Gase wasn’t fond of devoting such a lucrative commitment to the running back position, financially or schematically. With that said, Bell got what he wanted out of his time with the Jets. The three-time All-Pro was very vocal during his previous contractual dispute with the Steelers, as well as his stint as a free-agent heading into last season; money trumped fit, at least to a certain degree.

In that case, Bell’s tenure with Gang Green was wildly successful, racking up $28,031,250 in just 17 games with the Jets. To put that number in a better perspective, Bell made just $16M over his four years in Pittsburgh, per TheMMQB’s Andrew Brandt.

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Bell to the Giants on a One-Year Rental?

Bell’s pockets may be fatter, but his list of suitors is likely at an all-time low. Bell finished his Jets career with just 1,363 total yards, including a meager 3.3 ypc average. He’s also set to turn 29-years-old in February. His age will likely limit another big-time payday in the future.

While he is probably looking for a winning situation after a year-plus of mediocrity, the remainder of this season should rather be devoted to landing in the best position that allows him to showcase his skillset on a grander scale, in return driving his interest back up.

A quick glimpse at the odds above, and the Giants jump off the screen as arguably the best team to fill that role, with Washington and the Bears in close contention.

Yet, without even delving into the questionable offensive schematics behind the thinking of offensive coordinator Jason Garrett and the underwhelming play of New York’s offensive line, the move wouldn’t seem to do much for a Giants team in the midst of a rebuild.

Yes, Bell would improve their overall talent level. However, they’ve already brought in a veteran running back to fill the void left behind by the injured Saquon Barkley, in Devonta Freeman. The Ex-Atlanta Falcon has seen his usage increase in each of the past three weeks, and looks to have affirmed himself as the guy in New York’s backfield for the remainder of the season.

At this point in their careers, the addition of Bell would almost make the signing of Freeman a wash, limiting both veteran’s ability to make their presence fully felt on a team desperate for consistency.

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