According to Kaboly, Bell's camp is considering skipping the entire 2018 season as "newly learned information from the collective bargaining agreement" reveals he can be considered a third-year franchise player in 2019 (instead of a second) even if he doesn't report this year.
Under the third-year franchise tag, Bell's one-year guaranteed contract would be in the range of $25 million - a number that would almost certainly prevent the Steelers from applying the tag to the running back for a third straight year.
Additionally, Kaboly says Bell doesn't need to report to the Steelers this year in order to hit free agency in 2019, as the 26-year-old has already accrued enough seasons.
Bell tweeted he was leaving Miami on Monday, where he's been training while away from the team. It was believed he was headed to Pittsburgh with the intention of signing the franchise tag within the week.
The Steelers applied the franchise tag to Bell for the second consecutive year this past offseason, which was worth $14.54 million.
The All-Pro rusher's holdout has cost him $7.7 million so far this season.