Le'Veon Bell has played football since he was four. So when he sat out from the game in 2018, he needed to find a way to cure his desire to get back on the field.
Many who have had their NFL aspirations snuffed out prematurely turn to EA Sports' Madden videogame title to live out their pro football dreams. Apparently, it's a good way to pacify an NFL player's urge to return to the field in the midst of a holdout, too.
Jets tailback Le'Veon Bell told Sports Illustrated's Jenny Vrentas that during his holdout with the Steelers last season, he spent time playing Madden.
Here's an excerpt from Vrentas's story, detailing how Bell appeased his need to get back on the gridiron:
To scratch his football itch Bell played endless hours of Madden and called [his mother] Lisa when the Steelers were on TV, analyzing Pittsburgh’s game plan and displaying Tony Romo–like predictive powers. He texted James Conner, his backfield replacement, congratulating him on big plays—but he also fixated on how much work Conner was receiving on the goal line, more than he’d gotten himself.
Bell sat out the entire 2018 season as a result of holding out in hopes of receiving a better deal from Pittsburgh. He signed a four-year, $52.5 million contract with New York this past offseason, a deal that includes $35 million in guarantees.