The biggest winner in Le’Veon Bell’s holdout might be James Conner. Not only has he gotten an opportunity to play more, he’s played well and proven himself.
In fact, Conner has proven himself so much so that Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger is going to “push” for Conner to still get playing time when Bell decides to return.
“The good thing, Joe, is that I’m not the coach, right? I don’t have to make that decision. What I would say is, I don’t think we put [James] on the shelf by any means,” he said.
“Now granted, I think Le’Veon’s one of the best in the business, I think we all understand that and can agree on that. But what James needs to understand — and he’s gonna say the right things, and he should [as] a younger guy with a veteran, awesome football player ahead of him — but when Le’Veon comes back, in no way, shape or form should James just say, ‘OK, it’s all yours. I’m gonna sit back and when you need me, use me.’
“And I will push for James to get as much run as we can because we’ve seen some great things from him in all phases of football. He’s picking up blitzes, he’s catching the ball, he’s running hard and making plays and playing with a passion, so we need to keep using that.”
It sounds like Big Ben doesn’t want to say what he’s thinking here. And that is, that as good as Bell is, the Steelers don’t need him because of how well Conner has played.