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Tomlin optimistic over Bell contract

15 juli 2018 19:10

Pittsburgh Steelers coach Mike Tomlin is hopeful of running back Le'Veon Bell being tied down to a new long-term contract.

The Steelers used the franchise tag on Bell for the second straight year this offseason, prompting him repeat his stance from 2017, when Bell skipped workouts and training camp until he signed the tender just before the start of the regular season.

But, during his appearance this weekend at the Hampton Roads Youth Foundation football camp in his hometown of Hampton, Virginia, Tomlin told WAVY Channel 10: "Obviously we want to get a deal done, he wants to get a deal done, everybody has said that.

"Now it's just about the negotiators getting into a room and doing what it is they need to do. I'm excited and hopeful. Hopefully we'll have some exciting news before Monday."

Bell also expressed optimism about reaching an agreement on a long-term deal last month, saying he is eager to join the team and does not want to have "replications of what happened last year", having suffered a dip in production early in 2017.

Should he play under the franchise tender again, Bell will earn $14.5 million but is reportedly seeking a contract worth $17 million annually.

He and the Steelers have until Monday's 16:00 (EST) deadline to come to an agreement, otherwise he will play under the tag once again.

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