The Arizona Cardinals are looking a whole lot better since their 2020 campaign ended this past January. General manager Steve Keim has added an influx of talent to the roster that has many fans believing that a postseason berth is just around the corner for the Redbirds. Head coach Kliff Kingsbury’s squad is not yet a finished product, however.
One area of the team that could still use some assistance is the running back position. While current starter Chase Edmonds is a gifted football player, the 5’9, 205 pounder is not built to handle a full workload. If Keim acts quickly, there’s a veteran still floating around in free agency who could certainly provide the Cardinals with a reinforcement at the spot.
Le’Veon Bell, a three-time Pro Bowler, could still have some gas left in the tank. The 6’1, 225 pounder was used sparingly last fall, talling just 82 carries in a season that was split between stints with the New York Jets and Kansas City Chiefs. Bell was released by the Jets on October 13th, and was signed by the AFC champion Chiefs just four days later.
Bell was originally drafted by the Pittsburgh Steelers back in 2013, after a college career at Michigan State University. The Ohio native, a second-round pick, provided tremendous value for the Steelers during his five campaigns in the “Steel City”. Bell was selected to the Pro Bowl following the 2014, 2016 and 2017 seasons.
Bell’s best performance was back in ’14, when he rushed for 1,361 yards and eight touchdowns in 16 starts for the “Black and Gold”. The ball-carrier also added 83 receptions for 854 yards and another three scores that year. In ’17, Bell rumbled for 1,291 yards and nine touchdowns on the ground, and hauled in 85 passes for 655 yards and another two scores for the Pittsburgh offense.
A disgruntled Bell sat out the entire 2018 campaign after a contract dispute with the Steelers. The organization decided to move on from the ball-carrier early on in the 2019 offseason, enabling Bell to sign a four-year, $52.5 million free agent contract with the Jets on March 13th. Bell would appear in 17 games for New York, racking up 1,363 yards from scrimmage and four total touchdowns.
While Bell’s days as an NFL star appear to be a thing of the past, the 29-year old could still be useful in a complimentary role. An Edmonds-Bell combination in the Cards backfield would be an intriguing proposition. Having that scenario come to fruition for Arizona’s “Air Raid” scoring attack could be just a phone call from Keim away.