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Steelers start game planning for Browns without Le’Veon Bell after he fails to arrive on Wednesday

Pittsburgh Steelers v Kansas City Chiefs Photo by Peter Aiken/Getty Images

There had been optimism from some players on the Pittsburgh Steelers roster that Le’Veon Bell would arrive at team facilities by the time the coaching staff began installing the game plan for the Cleveland Browns. That day would be Wednesday, September 5 and at the time of writing, Le’Veon Bell is nowhere to be seen.

The Steelers have just three full days of practice remaining between now and the kickoff to the 2018 season and time is running out for Bell if he has any plans of playing in Week 1. Needing only to report to team facilities by 4 p.m. ET on Saturday and sign his franchise tag worth $14.544 million to avoid losing any money this year, it would be fair to question whether Bell has any intentions of playing against the Browns.

Should he fail to report by the deadline, Pittsburgh would be able to keep his game check worth over $855,000 every week he misses a game. However, he would need to arrive in Pittsburgh by Week 11 at the latest and be available for a minimum of six games to record an accrued season in 2018 and become a free agent in 2019.

Speaking to reporters in the locker room on Wednesday, Ben Roethlisberger seemed to have faith that the rest of the running backs on the roster would be more than able to pick up the slack in Bell’s absence.

For those fans eager to see what James Conner can do in a real game, it’s looking increasingly likely they will find out on Sunday.