Le’Veon Bell transition tag has become an option for the Pittsburg Steelers. Bell has continued to stay away from the Pittsburgh Steelers now through nine weeks of the regular season, and he may be weakening his position as a free agent this offseason by continuing his holdout for so long.
ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported on Sunday that Bell’s holdout has reached the point where the Steelers officially have the option of using the transition tag on the star running back this offseason.
Not only that, but the value of the Le’Veon Bell transition tag will be significantly less than the franchise tag amount of $14.5 million. Because he has foregone so many game checks by not signing his franchise tender, Bell is lowering his salary for 2018. The transition tag number pays him either the average of the top-10 paid players at his position or 120 percent of his previous year’s salary. According to Schefter, that number will be somewhere between $9 and $10 million for 2019.
While Schefter notes that a third Le’Veon Bell franchise tag would be too cost prohibitive for the Steelers, using the transition tag would give them the option of matching any team’s offer to Bell. The means he is not truly free to sign with any team he pleases, as Pittsburgh gets to decide whether or not to let him walk. One thing that would benefit Bell is that the Steelers would not be entitled to compensation from another team if they chose not to match any offer sheet he might sign.
Bell has to report to the Steelers and sign his franchise tender by Nov. 13 in order to be eligible to play this season. As one opposing coach recently touched on, the team may be hoping he just stays away at this point.
Le’Veon Bell transition tag