Pittsburgh, PA (SportsNetwork.com) – Pittsburgh Steelers coach Mike Tomlin
said he was unsure if running back Le’Veon Bell would be available for
Saturday’s AFC wild card matchup with the Baltimore Ravens.
Bell suffered a right knee injury in the season-finale against Cincinnati.
Tomlin, as he did on Sunday night, said the knee was hyperextended and added
that there was no structural damage.
“There is pain and soreness and discomfort associated with it,” said Tomlin on
Tuesday. “We’re going to take it day-by-day. I met with him just moments ago,
and he was in the training room on the stationary bike and riding like he was
training for the Tour de France.”
Bell was hurt in the third quarter of the 27-17 victory over the Bengals after
taking a helmet to the knee from Cincinnati safety Reggie Nelson. He ran for
just 20 yards on eight carries and caught six passes for 80 yards before
exiting the contest.
“We’re going to make the right decision,” Tomlin added Tuesday. “We won’t be
swayed by circumstance — the magnitude of the game and so forth. If he’s
healthy and able to protect himself and can be a positive contributor to our
efforts, we’ll play him. If we can’t answer ‘yes’ to all of those questions
and then some, we won’t. It’s just that simple.”
Bell finished the season as the NFL’s second-leading rusher with 1,361 yards.
“I don’t know whether or not he’s going to be available for the game,” Tomlin
continued. “We are going to make alternate plans if he doesn’t, but we’ll
leave the light on for him.”
The Steelers brought in running back Ben Tate on Tuesday for insurance. Tate
spent time with both Cleveland and Minnesota this season.