Add Le’Veon Bell to the ‘I got better when I escaped Adam Gase’ list

Doug Farrar
·2 min read

Ryan Tannehill. Kenyan Drake. Robby Anderson. Damien Williams. DeVante Parker. Mike Gesicki. The list of offensive players who have experienced massive career upticks when they escaped the confines of head coach and alleged offensive genius Adam Gase in either Miami or with the Jets is growing exponentially, and is yet another indictment of Gase’s continued employment… well, anywhere.

We can now add Le’Veon Bell’s name to the list. The Jets released Bell on October 13, and the Chiefs signed him two days later. Kansas City head coach Andy Reid originally said he wasn’t sure if Bell would be available for his team’s Week 7 go against the Broncos, but Bell seemed to pick up the offense pretty well, and he gained 39 yards on six carries in his debut as the Chiefs beat Denver, 43-16. Bell was not targeted in the passing game, which is where I think his true value could be to the Chiefs’ offense, but that will come in time. Reid is too smart for it not to, as is offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy.

But here’s one stat that will blow your mind, and it really indicates just how bad Gase is as a deployer of talent. In his six carries with the Chiefs, Bell had two runs of over 15 yards — a 16-yarder on his first carry with the Chiefs…

…and another 16-yarder with 5:49 left in the third quarter.

This is pretty much the Le’Veon Bell you saw in Pittsburgh. Patience to let the gaps open, nice acceleration, breaking tackles… all good. So why, in his 264 carries with the Jets over a season and a half, did Bell have just two carries of 15 or more yards — the same number he had in six carries with a functional offense?

The answer, as it is for all the names listed above, is simple — getting away from Adam Gase is the best thing that can happen for any offensive player.

Should we start the #FreeSamDarnold hashtag again? We probably should.