With Tuesday's trade deadline fast approaching, the Pittsburgh Steelers reportedly remain "very open" to the idea of shipping Le'Veon Bell, according to CBS Sports' Jason La Canfora. The Steelers are believed to be looking for a third-round pick or higher in exchange for Bell but have yet to receive any such offer. Teams around the league may be cautious about pulling the trigger on such a deal because the 26-year-old running back will become a free agent at the end of the season.
Bell, who has been holding out the entire 2018 season, is reportedly demanding a long-term deal worth $17 million per year. He would make $14.5 million by signing the one-year franchise tag currently being offered to him by the Steelers.
Earlier this month, Steelers owner Art Rooney II told the NFL Network that it was his "expectation" to have Bell remain on the team beyond the October 30 trade deadline. However, La Canfora reports that Rooney's remarks were less about his personal opinion and more of a reflection on Le'Veon's lack of interest in the trade market.
It is believed that the Philadelphia Eagles are the "most likely option" for Bell, given the state of their running back position following the season-ending injury suffered by Jay Ajayi. If Le'Veon remains on the Steelers' roster past the trade deadline, he will likely report by Week 10 to avoid having his contract toll. If Bell does return, it will most likely be his last season with Pittsburgh since his relationship with the organization and its players are probably broken beyond repair.