The New York Jets were once again completely uncompetitive in their 30-10 loss to the Arizona Cardinals yesterday. But among the many head-scratchers for the team was head coach Adam Gase’s seeming refusal to utilize star running back Le’Veon Bell.
That refusal to use Bell appeared to prompt the former All-Pro to take to social media and vent his frustrations. He liked a bunch of tweets pointing out how little he was used against Arizona.
On Monday, Gase addressed Bell’s social media behavior. He empathized with Bell, sharing his frustration in the team being 0-5. But he also justified his unwillingness to use Bell more, saying that Arizona’s defensive scheme made him change tactics.
“It is what it is,” Gase said. “I know he’s frustrated we haven’t won. It wasn’t necessarily the plan, not targeting him in the passing game. It ended up being that way with how they were playing us.”
As for the decision to use social media to vent his frustrations, Gase admitted he doesn’t like that. But he acknowledged that it “seems to be the way guys want to do it” when they’re upset.
“I hate that’s the route we go with all this instead of just talking to me about it, but that seems to be the ways guys want to do it nowadays.”
More Gase on Bell's sort of venting on social media:
"I hate that’s the route we go with all this instead of just talking to me about it, but that seems to be the ways guys want to do it nowadays."
— Ralph Vacchiano (@RVacchianoSNY) October 12, 2020
The Adam Gase-Le’Veon Bell relationship has been rocky from the start. It’s widely speculated that Gase didn’t want Bell during the 2019 offseason, but former GM Mike Maccagnan pulled the trigger anyway.
Bell went on to have one of his worst seasons despite playing in all 16 games.
Injuries have hampered Bell in 2020 so far, but he hasn’t exactly made the most of the few touches he has been given.
Week by week, it seems clear that Le’Veon Bell isn’t a part of the Jets’ plans. Whether he manages to outlast his embattled head coach will definitely be a storyline worth watching.