No-show Bell removed from Steelers' depth chart


Le'Veon Bell was removed from the Pittsburgh Steelers game plan as he continued to refuse to report to the team on Wednesday.

On the Steelers' official website, Bell's name has been removed from the depth chart altogether ahead of Pittsburgh's Week 2 game against the Kansas City Chiefs.

He already gave up a game check of $853,000 by not reporting before Saturday's 4 p.m. ET deadline ahead of Week 1 amid a contract holdout.

Bell did not sign his one-year, $14.54 million franchise tender after the Steelers retained him in March using the franchise tag. The two sides failed to reach an agreement despite negotiating toward a long-term contract in July. Based on the value of the franchise tender, Bell would earn $853K for every game this season.

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Without the All-Pro at halfback, the Steelers turned to running back James Conner as the starter in their Week 1 tie with the Cleveland Browns. He responded with 135 yards rushing and two scores on 31 carries and 57 receiving yards on five catches.

Conner, a second-year back from Pitt, was the highest-graded running back in preseason, according to Pro Football Focus.

Conner rushed for 100 yards on 19 carries to go with 64 receiving yards. He played in 14 games last season, gaining 144 yards on 32 carries for an average of 4.5 yards per carry.

See Bell throughout his career:

In his five seasons in Pittsburgh, Bell has had at least 1,200 yards rushing and 600 receiving yards three times. He is a two-time first-team All-Pro, has been named to three Pro Bowls and is generally regarded as the best all-around running back in the league.

But his contract squabbles with the club have become an annual offseason ritual. After not signing under the franchise tag until Sept. 4 last season, Bell averaged fewer than 3.5 yards per carry through the first three weeks. But he finished 2017 with a league-high 321 carries for 1,291 yards along with 85 catches for 655 yards and 11 total touchdowns.

--Field Level Media