Steelers running back Le’Veon Bell is facing a four-game suspension for missing a drug test in violation of the NFL’s substance-abuse policy, according to multiple reports Friday.
Sources told ESPN’s Dan Graziano that the suspension is the result of a missed drug test, not a failed one. Bell’s appeal is expected to be heard before the start of the season.
If the appeal is not overturned, Bell would miss the first four games of the season. Players are tested once for recreational drugs between April 20 and July.
Bell was suspended for the first three games last season — which was later reduced to two games — for violating the substance-abuse policy after he was arrested for DUI and marijuana possession in the summer of 2014.
Bell, who had right knee surgery last November, said recently he was on schedule for when the Steelers’ camp opens on July 28. He suffered a torn MCL and PCL in Week 8.
The 24-year-old fourth-year running back played in six games last year and rushed for 556 yards with three touchdowns.
Bell, who is entering the final year of his rookie contract, was a Pro Bowl and First-Team All-Pro choice in 2014 after rushing for 1,361 yards and eight touchdowns, with 854 receiving yards and three TDs.