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28 February 2017, 12:48 | Simon Arnold
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The Pittsburgh Steelers ensured Le'Veon Bell isn't hitting the free-agent market.
The Pittsburgh Steelers have announced that the team has placed the franchise tag on running back Le'Veon Bell. This is a team that has a culture of winning and a great business approach, so it stands to reason that they will find a way to keep Bell happy while also sticking to their principles.
If the Steelers don't sign Bell to a multi-year contract by July 15, he'll be paid close to $12.4 million this season.
"The (franchise) tag is always an option, and it's something we'll use if necessary", Colbert said, via Steelers.com.
The Pittsburgh Steelers and All-Pro wide receiver Antonio Brown are reportedly making "significant progress" toward a contract extension as he approaches the final year of his current deal.
Bell rushed for 1,268 yards (4.9-yard average) and caught 75 passes for another 616 yards last season, becoming the first player in National Football League history to average 100 rushing yards and 50 receiving yards per game. In his four-year career, he's only managed to play a full, 16-game season once. If that fails to get done, Bell will play the 2017 season under the franchise tag, which is expected to be worth a little over $12.7 million, according to ESPN's Kevin Seifert. Based on a $165 million salary cap, those percentages equate to a franchise tender of $11.97 million and a transition tender of $9.72 million.
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