The Jets still haven't full closed the door on moving running back Le'Veon Bell before next season, but it could cost them to do so.
According to a report from NFL Network's Ian Rapoport on Monday, the Jets have never been fully closed off to the idea of potentially trading Bell. Bell's name was tossed around in the rumor mill during the 2019 NFL trade deadline, but the Jets never pulled the trigger on any deal.
The latest report says things are status quo.
"The Jets have never slammed the door on potentially moving him," Rapoport reports.
In addition to potentially moving the former All-Pro, the report suggests the Jets may have to "eat some of the money" on his contract to get any deal done. After sitting out the 2018 season, Bell signed a four-year, $52.5 fully guaranteed contract with the Jets in March 2019.
However, Bell's signing was reportedly made without the blessing of head coach Adam Gase and was completed by former general manager Mike Maccagnan. Potentially moving Bell now falls on the lap of current GM Joe Douglas.
Most recently, Douglas had strong reviews of Bell in January.
"We value Le'Veon. We value the competitor. We value the teammate. We're excited with him being in our program another year, going through our offseason again," Douglas said. "I haven't seen all these rumors. I haven't seen it first hand. My interactions with Lev have been all positive."
In his first year with Gang Green, Bell averaged a career-low 3.2 yards per career and 789 rushing yards. He added three rushing touchdowns.
While Bell himself struggled, things certainly weren't all on the rusher. Football analytics outlet Pro Football Focus ranked the Jets' offensive line the fifth-worst group in the NFL last season, putting Bell and quarterback Sam Darnold behind the eight ball before their first season together ever really got going.