2014 Fantasy Football Outlook: Pittsburgh Steelers RB Le’Veon Bell
After a highly impressive rookie campaign, many fantasy football owners will wonder if Pittsburgh Steelers running back Le’Veon Bell can replicate his stellar debut season, or even improve on it in 2014. Last season, Bell broke Franco Harris‘ Steelers rookie record for yards from scrimmage. After such a special year, the team decided to sign former New England Patriots running back Legarrette Blount to clearly be Bell’s backup.
Head coach Mike Tomlin already addressed the issue prior to signing Blount stating that, “we need to add quality depth to that position.” Tomlin went on to say, “But I don’t view it as a necessity, quite honestly.” That statement alone should assure fantasy owners that there is no committee backfield in the eyes of the Steelers’ brass heading into the 2014 NFL season.
The reason why Bell has a chance to improve on his remarkable stats from last year is the hiring of former Tennesee Titans head coach Mike Munchak. Munchak plans to employ a zone-blocking scheme that should only benefit Bell. Bell will be a high-end RB-2, who has a legitimate chance to push for 300 touches this year.
Another factor that can affect Bell’s production in 2014 are the supposed upgrades in the receiving corps. Heading into the season, Lance Moore should take over Jerricho Cothery‘s role in the slot, and Markus Wheaton/Martavius Bryant will fight it out for the spot opposite of Antonio Brown. Those upgrades should keep the Steelers’ offense generating more red-zone chances than last year. Bell could be in line to receive some of those red zone touches.
Alexander Muir is a writer at Rant Sports.com. Follow him on Twitter @AmuirAlex, “Like” him on Facebook or add him on your network on Google.