After missing two games last season due to a suspension from a marijuana arrest, Le’Veon Bell finds himself back in the hot seat with Commissioner Goodell after missing a drug test. Bell is looking at a 4 game suspension at this point, though the situation is still in the appeals process. For fantasy purposes, this should drop him out of the first round of fantasy drafts. DeAngelo Williams‘ draft stock just went up as he is the primary backup RB for Bell and proved to be a very effective weapon out of the Steeler backfield and finished as a top 10 RB in both Standard and PPR formats.
There are a couple ways to look at the possible suspension. The first is that this will obviously hurt Bell’s draft status as fantasy footballers are going to be less likely to go after Bell if he is not going to be playing for the first 4 games. That would make 5 total weeks Bell misses by including the bye week.
I would caution that this suspension may not be a silver lining like other analysts may suggest. Though Bell could use the extra time to further rehab the knee that cost him most of the season last year, I feel a sense of deja vu in that Bell missed the first couple games of the season last year with a suspension and then got injured part way through the season, opening the door for Williams to revitalize his career. While I tend to draft more along a Zero RB strategy, which I have written about in previous articles and my ebook, this news helps me to stay that much further from drafting Bell for any of my fantasy teams.