Bell to attempt NFL return, eyes Steelers reunion

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Le’Veon Bell says he’s going to attempt an NFL comeback, and he’s only interested in playing for one team.

The running back, who hasn’t played in the NFL since 2021 and has embarked on a boxing career in recent years, expressed his intentions for an NFL return in a series of Snapchat videos posted Friday night.

Bell, who turns 32 later this month, said he will start training for his comeback in March, and although he didn’t mention the only team he would play for, it’s clear he’s referring to the Pittsburgh Steelers based on his past comments.

“And I’m gonna be honest with myself, I got to go out there and be like, I’m going to put my foot in the ground. Do I feel it? Am I hurting? Can I go out there and really play again? And bro, I’m telling you all right now when I go out there and train in March and if I hit April and I make this decision to come back to play in the NFL again, mark my words down — I will be better than I ever was.

“And I will only come back for that one team. You all know who it is. I don’t have to say no team. You all know who it is.”

The Steelers seem to be set at running back with Najee Harris and Jaylen Warren under contract, so it’s unknown if they would have an interest in a reunion.

Bell had a messy exit, sitting out the 2018 season after refusing to sign his franchise tag. But last year, in a video posted to social media, he apologized to Steelers fans.

“I never apologized to the fans for sitting out, or leaving the Steelers,” Bell said in the video. “I never apologized. So, I want to say I apologize for leaving the best damn fans there is in this damn world. I shouldn’t have left. I apologize, I should never have left. I apologize. That’s my fault. That’s on me.”

Bell was a three-time Pro Bowl selection, was twice a first-team All-Pro with the Steelers and is ranked fourth in franchise history with 5,336 rushing yards. However, after missing the 2018 season, he never regained that form. He signed with the New York Jets as a free agent in 2019 before being released the following season and playing for three other teams in 2020 and 2021.

He said last year on the “Steel Here” podcast that joining the Jets made him realize that “head coaches make a huge difference” and made him appreciate Mike Tomlin’s impact on the Steelers.

In 2022 he faced fellow running back Adrian Peterson in a boxing match and scored a technical knockout in the fifth round.

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