Le’Veon Bell has no regrets.
In truth, in the face of the worst begin to his terrific profession — with the Jets 1-five as they travel to play the Jaguars on Sunday — Bell is embracing the adversity.
Throughout a wide-ranging interview with The Post this week, it became clear that the Jets star operating back in fact welcomes the added degree of difficulty that this rough begin has presented him.
“I’ve under no circumstances began 1-five, so I type of appear at as this is a terrific chance for me to show what sort of particular person and player I am to support turn items about,” Bell mentioned. “That’s how I appear at it. I could have signed anyplace I wanted. I could have gone to [a team] that was currently great and helped make them a small much better. Or I could have gone someplace that hadn’t been winning games and support them win games.
“I’m a football player who loves challenges. I’ve under no circumstances definitely been on a poor group prior to, and even if they had been poor, I felt like I was a great adequate player to make them much better. So, why wouldn’t I attempt that at the highest level of football?
“Plus, I loved the Jets increasing up. Folks consider it was all about the revenue, but the Jets didn’t present me the finest deal. They produced me satisfied with the present, and this was someplace I wanted to be. It was an straightforward choice.’’
When the Jets signed Bell, numerous of his teammates had preconceived notions about the sort of guy who was about to join their locker area. Bell, an established star who sat out 2018 in a contract dispute, was lumped into the selfish globe in which his former Steelers teammate, receiver Antonio Brown, lives.
It was assumed Bell and Brown had been one particular and the very same. This is human nature. Generally occasions, even though, human nature leads you down the incorrect path. This is the case with Bell, who as a teammate is as substantially a humble, constructive force as any individual in the Jets locker area has ever met.
“I honestly anticipated him to be like somebody you didn’t want to be about,’’ offensive lineman Jonotthan Harrison told The Post. “I believed he was going to come in there like, ‘I’m Le’Veon Bell.’ I was expecting him to have an ego. But he was the comprehensive opposite. He’s so down-to-earth, such a chill guy. He’s one particular of the guys.’’
Linebacker Jordan Jenkins recalled that when the Jets signed Bell, a pal of his who is a Steelers fan ranted against it.
“He told me, ‘Oh, man, screw Le’Veon and AB [Brown] and all these egotistical prima donnas,’ ” Jenkins told The Post. “All the small rumors of him getting a poor guy or getting a adverse attitude, that is all bull [bleep]. From the initially day Le’Veon came in right here, he was cool. He’s a terrific leader for this group.
Bell does not see stars. He does not generate locker-area cliques. He unites.
“He’s one particular of the hardest-functioning players we have at practice,’’ offensive coordinator Dowell Loggains mentioned. “Those are the sort of guys you will need when you are attempting to flip one thing and make one thing. You will need your highest-paid players to be your hardest workers.’’
On Wednesday, he was performing his usual issue right after practice — immersed in a game of chess on his cell telephone, bouncing about the locker area bringing teammates into it. The teammate he plays chess against most is fourth-string tight finish Trevon Wesco.
“Le’Veon is a person who assists bring the entire group with each other,’’ Harrison mentioned.
“Once I got right here, all eyes had been type of on me, seeing what type of leader I would be,’’ Bell mentioned. “It let persons see my character and see what sort of leader I am and type of opened people’s eyes up to me.”
Bell recognized appropriate away how impactful the way he carried out himself would be on his teammates.
“I normally just attempt to remain constructive,” Bell mentioned. “I could possibly really feel diverse, but I’m not going to show anyone else that I really feel diverse, mainly because that could possibly impact somebody else’s mood. I’m patient. I have an understanding of it is going to come. It is not like my talent went away or I’m not a great football player.”
Patience is Bell’s virtue. Exactly where it comes from, who knows? Really possibly his obsession with playing chess.
“When you consider about it, he’s type of playing chess on the football field — mentally, he absolutely understands what’s going on and is anticipating the subsequent move,’’ fellow operating back Ty Montgomery mentioned.
“I am playing chess when I’m playing football,’’ Bell mentioned. “It’s not saying I’m not gifted athletically, mainly because I am. But I play so substantially much more from the neck up.”
This has been the most pleasant — and useful — surprise that Bell has brought to the Jets. And they’ll be much better for it. Perhaps Sunday in Jacksonville, perhaps the following week. But his influence will be lasting.
For much more on the Jets, listen to this episode of the Jets podcast, “Gang’s All Here”: