Nov 29, 2020; Tampa, Florida, USA; Kansas City Chiefs running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire (25) runs the ball against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers during the second half at Raymond James Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Reports: Chiefs’ Clyde Edwards-Helaire likely to play vs. Bills

Kansas City Chiefs rookie running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire likely will play in Sunday’s AFC Championship Game against the visiting Buffalo Bills, multiple media outlets reported.

Fellow running back Le’Veon Bell and wide receiver Sammy Watkins are not expected to compete for the Chiefs, per reports.

Edwards-Helaire is questionable with hip and ankle injuries. He sat out the final two games of the regular season as well as Kansas City’s 22-17 divisional round victory over the Cleveland Browns last Sunday.

Darrel Williams led the Chiefs by rushing 13 times for 78 yards against the Browns.

Edwards-Helaire, 21, has team-leading totals in carries (181), rushing yards (803) and rushing touchdowns (four) since being selected by Kansas City with the 32nd overall pick of the 2020 NFL Draft. He also has 36 catches for 297 yards and a score.

Edwards-Helaire rushed for 161 yards on 26 carries in a 26-17 win over the Bills in Week 6.

Bell (knee) and Watkins (calf) are questionable for Sunday’s game with their respective injuries.

Bell rushed for 254 yards and two touchdowns in nine games with the Chiefs.

Demarcus Robinson and Mecole Hardman likely will see more snaps in place of Watkins, who had 37 receptions for 421 yards and two touchdowns this season. Hardman had four catches for 58 yards versus Cleveland while Robinson had one reception for 14 yards.

–Field Level Media

Sep 13, 2020; Orchard Park, New York, USA; New York Jets running back Le'Veon Bell (26) walks off the field following the game against the Buffalo Bills at Bills Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

Report: Injury guarantee helped spur Jets’ release of Bell

A hefty injury guarantee for 2021 helped to spur the New York Jets to release running back Le’Veon Bell, ESPN reported Sunday.

Bell’s contract carried an $8 million guarantee for 2021, adding to the buyer’s remorse the team had over signing him to a four-year, $52.5 million deal as a free agent in March 2019.

Rather than take the risk, the Jets decided to release him. The Kansas City Chiefs signed Bell to a one-year deal on Thursday.

Bell, 28, was a two-time All-Pro while spending 2013-17 with the Pittsburgh Steelers, for whom he had three 1,200-plus-yard rushing seasons. He sat out the 2018 season in a salary dispute.

Bell wound up playing 17 games and amassing just 863 rushing yards and four total touchdowns for the Jets, who paid him $28 million.

In two games for New York this season, Bell gained 74 yards on 19 carries and caught three passes for 39 yards.

–Field Level Media

Sep 13, 2020; Orchard Park, New York, USA; New York Jets running back Le'Veon Bell (26) walks off the field following the game against the Buffalo Bills at Bills Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

Report: RB Bell choosing between Chiefs, Bills, Dolphins

Le’Veon Bell reportedly plans to sign with either the Kansas City Chiefs, Buffalo Bills or Miami Dolphins, ESPN reported on Thursday.

The report also said that a decision could come perhaps as early as Thursday, one day after the disgruntled running back was released by the New York Jets (0-5).

The high-octane Chiefs (4-1) are averaging 119.4 rushing yards per game, which is 13th-best in the NFL. They are led in the backfield by rookie Clyde Edwards-Helaire, who leads the team in carries (81) and rushing yards (344).

The Bills (4-1) have rushed for just 93.8 yards per game, which is 28th in the league. Devin Singletary leads the team in carries (61) and rushing yards (238), however rookie Zack Moss has only played in two games due to injury.

Buffalo coach Sean McDermott confirmed Thursday that the team has looked into Bell.

“We always look into every situation, this being one of them. Trying to improve our football team — that’s all I can say right now,” McDermott said, via ESPN.

The Dolphins (2-3) rank 21st in the league with 104.2 rushing yards per game. Myles Gaskin has rushed 64 times for 249 yards to pace their ground attack.

Miami head coach Brian Flores was asked about the team’s interest in Bell during Thursday’s press conference.

“That’s really more of a question for (general manager) Chris (Grier),” Flores said, via the Miami Herald. “My focus is on (Sunday’s game against the) Jets and the players they have on their team.

“I’ve said this before, he’s a very good player, as a personnel staff, an organization, (we consider) anyone available who can help our team.”

For what it’s worth, New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick wasn’t interested in talking about Bell on Thursday.

“I wouldn’t be able to really talk about anybody that’s not a member of our team now,” Belichick said. “So I’d have to pass on that one. Whatever I’ve said about Bell before on the record, I stand by that, for sure.”

Bell, 28, carried 13 times for 60 yards in the Jets’ 30-10 loss to Arizona on Sunday after missing the previous three games with a hamstring injury. In two games this season, the three-time Pro Bowl selection has 74 yards on 19 carries and three receptions for three yards.

Last season, Bell was a disappointment with a paltry 3.2 yards per carry while rushing for 789 yards and three touchdowns. He also caught 66 passes for 461 yards and one score.

Bell topped 1,200 rushing yards three times in five seasons with the Pittsburgh Steelers from 2013-17 while twice earning first-team All-Pro honors. He missed the entire 2018 campaign in a salary dispute after refusing to sign a $14.5 million franchise tag.

–Field Level Media

Sep 13, 2020; Orchard Park, New York, USA; New York Jets running back Le'Veon Bell (26) walks off the field following the game against the Buffalo Bills at Bills Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

Report: Jets attempting to trade RB Bell

The winless New York Jets want to trade running back Le’Veon Bell, the New York Daily News reported Tuesday.

Sources told the newspaper the Jets hope to deal the 28-year-old Bell “sooner rather than later,” with the NFL trade deadline set for Oct. 29.

Bell declined to speak to the media following Sunday’s 30-10 loss to the Arizona Cardinals, which marked his return to the lineup after a three-week absence with a hamstring injury.

After the game, Bell reportedly “liked” several posts on Twitter that questioned why he was only targeted once in the receiving game against the Cardinals. He caught one pass for 7 yards and rushed 13 times for 60 yards.

“I know he’s frustrated that we haven’t won,” head coach Adam Gase said Monday. “It wasn’t necessarily the plan of not targeting him in the past game, it just kind of ended up being that way with how they were they were playing us. So that’s what it is, I mean, just try to find ways to move the football that’s all we’re trying to do, and it doesn’t always go exactly as planned.”

Bell rushed six times for 14 yards and caught two passes for 32 yards in the season opener against the Buffalo Bills, but missed most of the second half with the injured hamstring.

A two-time first-team All Pro and three-time Pro Bowl selection, Bell sat out the 2018 season in a contract dispute with the Pittsburgh Steelers. He signed a four-year, $52.5 million contract with the Jets when he became a free agent in March 2019.

Bell rushed for 789 yards in 15 games last season, marking his lowest rushing total since 2015. He caught 66 passes for 461 yards.

–Field Level Media

Sep 13, 2020; Orchard Park, New York, USA; New York Jets running back Le'Veon Bell (26) walks off the field following the game against the Buffalo Bills at Bills Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

Reports: Jets to activate RB Bell from IR

The New York Jets will activate running back Le’Veon Bell from injured reserve for Sunday’s game against the visiting Arizona Cardinals, multiple outlets reported.

Bell has been missed the past three games with a hamstring injury.

He got hurt late in the second quarter of the Sept. 13 season opener at Buffalo after falling awkwardly on an incomplete pass during a play that ended with a defensive holding penalty.

He took part in five plays in the second half of the Jets’ 27-17 loss, then came out for good once the seriousness of the injury became apparent.

Bell, 28, rushed six times for 14 yards and caught two passes for 32 yards against the Bills.

The Jets are off to an 0-4 start.

A two-time first-team All Pro and three-time Pro Bowl selection, Bell sat out the 2018 season in a contract dispute with the Pittsburgh Steelers. He signed a four-year, $52.5 million contract with the Jets when he became a free agent in March 2019.

Bell rushed for 789 yards in 15 games last season, marking his lowest rushing total since 2015. He caught 66 passes for 461 yards.

–Field Level Media

Sep 13, 2020; Orchard Park, New York, USA; New York Jets running back Le'Veon Bell (26) warms up prior to the game against the Buffalo Bills at Bills Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

Report: Jets RB Bell (hamstring) headed to IR

New York Jets running back Le’Veon Bell is headed to a stint on injured reserve with an ailing hamstring, NFL Network’s Kim Jones reported on Tuesday.

Bell, who is eligible to return in three weeks, exited during the third quarter of New York’s 27-17 setback to the Buffalo Bills on Sunday.

The 28-year-old Bell injured his hamstring late in the second quarter after falling awkwardly on an incomplete pass in which the running back drew a defensive holding penalty. He played five plays in the second half, then came out for good once the injury’s impact on his ability to play was apparent.

“I’m mad at myself that I let him go back in there in the second half,” Jets coach Adam Gase said. “That play looked bad, because I’m watching him — I thought it was going to be a touchdown — he got grabbed and then just kind of the way he planted and torqued, it looked real bad. I saw him grab his hamstring, and he wouldn’t come out.”

Bell had 14 yards rushing and 32 yards on a pair of receptions in the Week 1 loss.

A two-time first-team All Pro and three-time Pro Bowl selection, Bell sat out the 2018 season in a contract dispute with the Pittsburgh Steelers. He signed a four-year, $52.5 million contract with the Jets when he became a free agent in March 2019.

Bell rushed for 789 yards in 15 games last season, marking his lowest rushing total since 2015. He caught 66 passes for 461 yards.

The Jets (0-1) host defending NFC champion San Francisco (0-1) on Sunday at 1 p.m. ET.

–Field Level Media

Sep 13, 2020; Orchard Park, New York, USA; New York Jets running back Le'Veon Bell (26) warms up prior to the game against the Buffalo Bills at Bills Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

Jets’ Gase on Bell injury: ‘mad at myself’

New York Jets head coach Adam Gase said after his team’s season-opening 27-17 loss to the host Buffalo Bills on Sunday that he was angry at himself for the way he handled injured running back Le’Veon Bell.

Bell injured his hamstring late in the second quarter after falling awkwardly on an incomplete pass in which the running back drew a defensive holding penalty. He played five plays in the second half, then came out for good once the injury’s impact on his ability to play was apparent.

“I’m mad at myself that I let him go back in there in the second half,” Gase said after the game at Orchard Park, N.Y.

No additional information on the injury was released Sunday, and Bell was not made available to the media.

That play looked bad,” Gase said, referring to when his 28-year-old star was injured. “I’m watching, and I thought it was going to be a touchdown, then he got grabbed. And kind of the way he planted and torqued, it looked really bad.

“I saw him grab his hamstring and he wouldn’t come out. We come in at halftime. I let him go back in there. I was worried about it, and we were eventually like, ‘I can’t put you in there. We can’t take a chance on getting more hurt than you already are.’”

Earlier this summer, Bell was pulled from scrimmaging with what the team called hamstring tightness, but the running back tweeted shortly afterward there was nothing wrong with his hamstring.

Gase soon had a sit-down with Bell to clear the air, and nothing else had come of Bell’s hamstring until Sunday.

Now in his second season in New York after spending five in Pittsburgh and sitting out the 2018 season altogether, Bell had 14 yards rushing and 32 yards on a pair of receptions before the injury Sunday.

He had 789 yards rushing, 461 yards receiving and four total touchdowns last season. In his five seasons with the Steelers, Bell ran for 5,336 yards on 1,229 carries and had 2,660 yards on 312 receptions. He scored 42 total touchdowns, made three Pro Bowls, and was twice named first-team All-Pro in Pittsburgh.

The Jets host defending NFC champion San Francisco in Week 2 next Sunday.

–Field Level Media

Aug 20, 2020; Florham Park, New Jersey, USA; New York Jets running back Le'Veon Bell (26) catches the ball during training camp at Atlantic Health Center.  Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

Bell angry after Gase pulls him from Jets practice

New York Jets coach Adam Gase pulled Le’Veon Bell out of the team’s first scrimmage on Wednesday, apparently drawing the ire of the running back.

Gase told reporters he removed Bell after limited snaps out of concern over hamstring tightness. In a pair of social media posts, Bell saw things differently.

“ain’t nothing wrong my hamstrings,” Bell wrote on Twitter, followed by: “its tough to stay loose when you do a bunch of standing around……& I’m used to GOINGGG”

Gase said the 28-year-old running back knows just that one speed — fast — and he sometimes need to be slowed down.

“He hasn’t been somebody that really comes out of practice,” Gase said. “Like, I always have to hold him and say, ‘I don’t think it’s a good idea for you to go.’ But he’ll try to go back out there.

“So that’s why we pulled him out. He won’t do it on his own. He’ll keep going out there until somebody else pulls him out.”

A two-time first-team All Pro, Bell sat out the 2018 season in a contract dispute with the Pittsburgh Steelers. He signed a four-year, $52.5 million contract with the Jets when he became a free agent in March 2019.

In 15 games last season, he rushed for 789 yards, his lowest total since 2015, when he ran for 556 yards in just six games.

–Field Level Media

Five AFC North Stars Who Are Gamers

JuJu Smith-Schuster – WR Pittsburgh Steelers
Smith-Schuster is one of the NFL’s most vocal proponents of esports. He made headlines last March when he squaded up in Fortnite with Ninja, Drake and Travis Scott in a twitch stream that broke the individual record for viewers on the streaming platform.
Even before joining that stream, Smith-Schuster signed an apparel deal with esports organization FaZe Clan. FaZe originally started as a Call of Duty trick-shot clan. They were immensely popular in the “golden age” of COD on YouTube and have since expanded to represent top players in a variety of games.


At only 21 years old, Smith-Schuster was the youngest player in the NFL in the 2017 season. Like other fans of Call of Duty, he probably tried to emulate the insane moves pulled off by members of the group considered COD’s most elite snipers.
While Smith-Schuster probably never progressed to the level of pulling off a double-ladder spin quick scope – shown here by FaZe Fakie – he did play the game on “insane,” the highest sensitivity possible which requires a deft touch on the joystick. According to his teammates, he’s the man to beat in a Steelers locker room that offers plenty of competition
Le’Veon Bell – RB Pittsburgh Steelers
Another key part of Pittsburgh’s high-octane offense, Bell is also a huge gamer. He is relentless on the field and, while growing up, was relentless on the sticks as well.
“My mom used to have to take the game from me ’cause I would play it so much,” Bell told SB Nation. “Call of Duty is what got me started, I got so addicted to the game, I’d do my homework before school so that after practice I would be able to instantly go home and get on the game. When I was younger, it was Grand Theft Auto, but now it’s mostly COD and Madden.”
Now, not only is Bell a fan of the game, he is actually a character in COD:WWII. Alongside teammate Alejandro Villanueva, Bell was featured in the game’s “Headquarters” mode.


“Oh, I’ve always been a “Call of Duty” fan, but I didn’t expect to ever be in the game,” Bell told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. “I’d never even thought about that. It was crazy that I had the opportunity to do it. I’ve been playing Call of Duty for years, since I had PS3.”
For him and Villanueva to be in the game took seven hours of motion capture over two days. The motion capture is the most extensive for a COD game to date as the franchise returned to its gritty, realistic roots for WWII. Before that version, the series had taken a futuristic vibe with titles like Black Ops III and Infinite Warfare.
Alejandro Villanueva – LT Pittsburgh Steelers
He was mentioned alongside, Bell but he has a unique perspective on Call of Duty that few NFL players can share. After graduating from West Point, Villanueva served in three tours in Afghanistan where he was awarded a Bronze Star, for rescuing injured soldiers under enemy fire.
A common thread in his life, from being an Army Ranger overseas to now being a starting left tackle, has been Call of Duty.
“I was [in Afghanistan] in 2011, ’12, ’13, ’14 and ’15, so I played every single game that came out,” Villanueva told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. “I played all of them. Whatever one was the new one, I was playing.”
On the surface, people may be surprised that soldiers spend their free time playing a model of war, but Villanueva explains that video games are a symbol of home. Villanueva, who was entered the army as a second lieutenant, often played with enlisted soldiers.
“When we were doing the real thing, we were still playing video games,” he said in the same interview. “Enlisted soldiers, they’re young guys who just got out of high school. You graduate from high school, you’re living your high-school life, and then a year and a half later, you’re in Afghanistan and doing the real life.”
Baker Mayfield – QB Cleveland Browns
Finally moving away from Pittsburgh, we turn to Cleveland’s new bastion of hope. The No. 1 overall pick, Baker Mayfield, lit up offenses at Oklahoma and now will lead a Brown’s offense that has the potential to be explosive for the first time in years.
Now that he has won a Heisman, and been drafted first overall, it’s hard to imagine Mayfield doing anything other than football. But, according to his college roommate Sooners fullback Jaxon Uhles, Mayfield once considered a career as a pro gamer.
“He told me at one point he was about to quit football when he was in high school and just play video games; become a professional video gamer,” Uhles told NCAA.com.
Mayfield’s dedication is obvious, going from a three-star recruit to a Heisman winner, so it’s hard to bet against his success in the virtual arena. As for what game Mayfield would be competing in? It would likely be Halo.
“One-on-one, I don’t think there’s anyone on campus who can beat me,” Mayfield told NCAA.com. “I’m gonna put that out there.”
While Halo’s competitive scene has fallen off since Mayfield’s high school days, many old pros in that scene have found a new home in Fortnite. Most notable is Ninja, who was one of the best Halo players before being vaulted to international stardom as the streaming face of Fortnite. Mayfield also made the switch and can be seen getting dubs in the game on his Instagram account with his girlfriend on his back.


AJ Green – WR Cincinnati Bengals
Green was mentioned in the AFC East iteration of this series when he went head-to-head against LeSean McCoy in a Call of Duty: Ghosts Grudge Match. While McCoy won that contest, Green didn’t take it sitting down, accusing the Bills RB of screen peeking.
“You cheating mayne, you been watching my screen,” Green said in this video.
Green is a huge fan of the game and says when football season ends, Call of Duty season begins.
“That’s all I do, I play Call of Duty non-stop,” Green told the PostGame.
In addition to COD, he also plays a lot of NBA 2K. That is similar to many other players around the league. They typically play shooters and sports simulation games like Madden, NBA 2K and FIFA.
This is part seven of our division-by-division look at some of the star gamers around the league. If you want to read more here are the completed divisions: AFC East, AFC West, NFC South, NFC North, NFC East and NFC West.