PITTSBURGH (Sports Radio 93-7 The Fan) – Mike Tomlin expressed his excitement regarding the return of Le’Veon Bell, saying the running back is in “great physical condition” as he expected.
Upon return to practice, Bell signed his $12.1 million franchise tender Monday, making him the highest paid running back in the NFL. Tomlin stated he does not have a definitive plan regarding Bell’s workload Sunday against the Cleveland Browns.
“We’ll continue to watch his progress throughout the week,” he said. “Not only in terms of what he’s able to execute from a football conditioning standpoint, but also from a quality of execution standpoint, a detail standpoint, and then see the cumulative effects of that work as we proceed.”
When Bell did not report to training camp, Tomlin said there would be consequences for his actions. He clarified Thursday that those consequences would be in regards to how much Bell’s performance suffered during his absence.
“The consequences of his rust or lack of exposure will be revealed to him and to us over time,” he said. “How much football he can absorb, the amount of detail in his play, his overall level of football conditioning, his ball security, all of those things are potential consequences of time missed.”
While Tomlin would not speculate as to the totality of those consequences, he did say that he will need to have open communication with Bell in the coming days to minimize them.
“He and I have got to do a good job of communicating in the mornings to assess the day before’s work and chart out a course for the upcoming day,” he said. ” We will do that and I’m sure we’ll get increased clarity as we get closer to game action.”