After reports surfaced earlier today that RB Le’Veon Bell would prefer to play for the Miami Dolphins, it brought up the question, “Should they sign him?” The answer above might lead you to believe that I am not a Bell fan.
On the contrary though, I love Le’Veon Bell as a player. Bell is one of the most talented running backs in the NFL today. His running vision unparalleled and he the patience that most backs don’t have. Bell can stop on a dime and switch directions. He can hit the hole like a freight train and blow past defenders. The two-time All-Pro player can run, receive, and pass block as well as the best RB in the league.
— Matt Verderame (@MattVerderame) January 24, 2019
So make no mistake, I like him alright. But there is a time and place for everyone, and I don’t think Miami is the right place for Bell at this time. After firing Adam Gase and bringing in Flores, the Dolphins are rumored to be looking at a down year. We won’t call it tanking, because no one tanks in the NFL. However, Miami is looking for a nice spot in that QB-loaded 2020 draft.
I understand that it isn’t easy to tell fans, especially in Miami, that they shouldn’t want something really good and flashy. But they need to know that signing Bell would not help the long-term plan of finding a franchise QB. Lets say that Miami does draft a QB this year, maybe Murray or Lock, and they sign Bell, and they patch up the O-line. You would still be in the first year under a new regime and a rookie QB.
Not to mention, the defense would probably be awful. Why? Because they couldn’t afford any talent on defense after spending so much on Bell. Which brings me to my real issue with Bell and that’s the money.
Too Much Money
The NFL is a business, as many know, and giving RBs big money does not usually pan out well. Bell reportedly wants $17 million dollars per year. We know he is serious about this, because he sat out an entire year with the Steelers because they would not pay him that. He, reportedly, turned down their offer of $70 million total, almost $30 million was guaranteed. To put that into perspective, the highest paid RB in the league is Todd Gurley, at $14. 375 million a year and $21 million guaranteed. If you don’t know how great Todd Gurley is, just watch the Super Bowl in February.
Bell wants to be paid as a number one RB and a number two WR. He can make a fair argument for both, as he is one of the top pass-catchers in the NFL. Bell is also only 26 years old. Someone will be willingly to give him what he wants. But it should not be Miami.
I have not mentioned that Miami has 2 promising RBs in Kenyan Drake and Kallen Ballage. As well as Frank Gore who probably wants to return to Miami next season. Lets not also forget that Miami still has to their pay Pro-Bowl corner Xavien Howard. Overall, Miami is just better suited to stay away from Bell and start building the foundation of the team. In the NFL you can rebuild quickly, but it does not start with signing a star RB.