NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Steelers running Le’Veon Bell is facing a four-game suspension after missing a drug test, according to multiple reports.
According to ESPN, the NFL has not announced the suspension yet because Bell is appealing the ban. A date has not yet been set for his appeals hearing, the report said.
Bell, 24, is largely considered to be one of the league’s most talented young running backs, but a combination of off-the-field trouble and injuries has held him back.
He was suspended for the first three games of last season for violating the NFL’s substance abuse policy after he was arrested for marijuana possession in 2014. The NFL later reduced the suspension to two games on appeal.
Players who fail a drug test are entered into the league’s drug program, which includes increased testing. A missed test is treated the same as a failed test.
A second-round draft pick out of Michigan State in 2013, Bell rushed for 860 yards as a rookie before breaking out with 1,361 yards in 2014. Last season, he played in just six games before suffering a season-ending knee injury.
Without Bell in the lineup, the Steelers would likely have to lean on 33-year-old DeAngelo Williams to carry the load in the running game.
In March, Steelers wide receiver Martavis Bryant was suspended for at least one year for violating the NFL’s substance abuse policy.