NFL Notes: Le’Veon Bell, Contract, Draft

     

Le’Veon Bell

Initially, RB Le’Veon Bell didn’t plan to sit out the entire season after the Pittsburgh Steelers franchise-tagged him a second time.  The original plan was to sit out until Week 10, then play the final six games.  

“That was the biggest mix-up the whole time,” Bell said via Pro Football Talk. “I thought I had to sit out until Week 10 or else they can [franchise] tag me again [at $14.54 million]. Around the bye week, that’s when I found out I didn’t have to play.” 

Even then, Bell still considered showing back up to the team.  

“I was so close to doing it,” Bell said. “At the same time, I was so torn. Do I go through that? Will they embrace me or will they not? I eventually decided I sat out 10 games, I can sit six more. At the time, the team was malfunctioning, having problems, a lot of blame on me. I didn’t want to come back and not feel welcome.” 

Contract

According to Pro Football Talk, Le’Veon Bell’s new contract with the Jets breaks down as follows:

  • $8 million signing bonus
  • $4 million 2019 roster bonus and $4.5 million 2020 roster bonus which becomes fully guaranteed five days after the contract is signed.  
  • $2 million 2019 base salary, $8.5 million 2020 base salary, $8 million 2021 base salary and $9.5 million 2022 base salary.  
  • Both the 2019 and 2020 base salaries are fully guaranteed.  The 2021 base salary is guaranteed for injury at signing and becomes fully guaranteed on the fifth day of the 2021 league year.  
  • $31,250 in per-game active roster bonuses, with a max of $500,000 per year which works out to 16 games.  
  • Bell also has $3 million training camp bonuses in 2021 and 2022.  
  • In each year, Bell can earn $500,000 incentives each for reaching 1,800 yards from scrimmage, 2,000 yards from scrimmage, and 1,800 yards from scrimmage in addition to the Jets making the playoffs.  Altogether, Bell can total $1.5 million per year in potential incentives.  
  • Bell also has a potential one-time base salary escalator of $550,000 for 2020, 2021 and 2022 if he either gains 2,000 yards from scrimmage, is named the AP offensive player of the year or wins MVP in either 2019, 2020 or 2021.  
  • Total fully guaranteed at signing comes out to $27 million, with the total guarantee including for injury is $35 million. 

Draft

ECU DE Nate Harvey lost his eligibility appeal with the NCAA and will pursue a professional career.  

“Our appeal was denied by the NCAA,″ ECU HC Mike Houston said via Pro Football Talk. “We respect the decision of the NCAA, but at the same time we are disappointed. . . . We’ve had some long discussions this morning about how we’re going to support Nate in this transition from right now becoming a student-athlete at East Carolina University to pursuing a professional career. We will alert the NFL this afternoon that he will be eligible for the draft.″ 

It remains to be seen if Harvey will be eligible for the regular draft or if he will have to enter the supplemental draft.  

  • Michigan DE Chase Winovich will have thumb surgery for an injury suffered against Ohio State at the end of November.  It’s a two-month recovery and Winovich is expected to be ready for OTAs and minicamp for the team that drafts him.  (Pro Football Talk)
  • Winovich says he’s also had teams work him out as both a 4-3 defensive end and a 3-4 linebacker.  
  • Louisiana Tech DE Jaylon Ferguson is meeting with the Chiefs, Giants and Bills following his pro day.  (Tony Pauline)

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