Holding the #1 pick in your fantasy draft is always so bittersweet. You get to choose from any player you want to build your team around, but that’s never an easy choice. Well, the decision got a bit easier for you Friday morning as Le’Veon Bell faces a 4-game suspension for missing a drug test. To be clear, Bell didn’t fail a drug test, but according to NFL policy a missed drug test is the same result as failing one. Bell will of course appeal the suspension, although an appeal date has not been announced as of now. A suspension would result in Bell missing the first four games of the 2016 season.
— SCOUT Fantasy (@ScoutFantasy) July 22, 2016
As you likely remember, Bell missed the first two games of last season due to a suspension after violating the league’s NFL substance abuse policy on a marijuana charge and DUI. Aside from missing two games early last season, Bell would go on to play in only six games after a devastating leg injury. His durability was already a concern, but now with the possible suspension, Bell is untouchable with the first pick of your fantasy draft. Is he even worth a 1st round pick at this point?
Last season we saw a huge career revival from DeAngelo Williams who took over as the lead back in Bell’s absence. Williams rushed for over 900 yards, his most since 2009 and scored 11 TDs as well – the 2nd most in his career. The possibilities are endless in that Pittsburgh offense and Williams will serve as a viable RB2 as long as Bell doesn’t suit up. His production was quite spotty last season, but he should be able to haul in at least two good games if he opens the season as the team’s starting tailback. Currently with an ADP of 8.06, he is bound to see a rise with the recent news regarding Bell.
Bell’s draft position is now up in the air. Before this possible suspension, he was my top rated RB. Assuming he misses four games, I would still draft Bell in the early 2nd round as he could provide a huge boost to your team upon his return. Even if you started 0-4, he’s the type of player who can single-handedly win you games week-to-week with his dual threat ability in a volume Pittsburgh offense.