I am assuming other fans of the Pittsburgh Steelers reactions were the same when they heard through the social media grapevine of Le'Veon Bell reportedly missing an NFL mandated drug test.
For me, I received a text message from fellow BTSC writer Mike Frazer stating "Just heard a rumor Bell missed a drug test. Might want to keep an eye on this." or something to that affect.
My reaction? "You've got to be kidding me...again?!"
Clearly the reference to a repetitive action would be after Martavis Bryant was suspended indefinitely for missing multiple mandatory drug tests. With Bell already in the league's substance abuse program after his misdeeds with LeGarrette Blount prior to the 2014 season, he would be facing a suspension which could range to half a season.
At this point, these rumors are just that -- rumors.
"I haven't missed any drug tests," Bell told Jason Mackey of DKPittsburghSports.com. "I haven't failed any drug tests. I'm completely fine."
Join me, and every other member of Steelers Nation, in saying, "I sure hope so."
Everyone has seen this act before. An athlete adamantly denies rumors, only to have them come back and be true. In this instance, there is no reason to not believe Bell is telling the truth, but after Bryant's actions you are certainly more skeptical than you might have been in the past.
As for Bell, the "completely fine" label he placed on himself goes way beyond the rumors of a missed drug test. In terms of his performance, it is speaking of his surgically repaired knee.
"When I was running routes and doing everything, it felt even better today," Bell said. "I felt more confident. The biggest thing for me is confidence. I know my knee is strong enough. I know my legs are strong enough. I know I'm in great condition. It's just kind of mental now for me. As time goes on, the more and more reps I do, I get more confident in what I can do."
Part of the mental side of returning from injury is easing the athlete back onto the field, something Bell certainly struggles with. He prides himself as an every down back who can literally do it all, which ultimately makes the situation that much more difficult.
"It sucks not to be able to go out there and do everything, but at the same time, they're doing everything for my best interest," Bell said. "I have to get to ready for the season. That's the most important thing."
Being ready for the season is the most important thing, and the Steelers need their All-Pro running back healthy, and available, when the regular season rolls around.