Steelers running backs Le'Veon Bell and LeGarrette Blount will be charged with drug possession after they were pulled over Wednesday in Ross by a motorcycle officer who smelled marijuana coming from their passing automobile, township police said. Bell, 22, also is expected to be charged with driving under the influence of marijuana after officers receive results of a blood test taken after the stop, Ross police Detective Brian Kohlhepp said.
The players and a woman who was in the back seat admitted having possession of a small- to medium-sized bag — estimated to be 20 grams — of suspected marijuana that was found in the glove compartment, Kohlhepp said. The name of the woman was not immediately available.
All three were released from custody and will be sent a summons to appear before a district judge on the misdemeanor charges, Kohlhepp said.
The team's top two running backs could be disciplined under the NFL's substance-abuse policy, which includes penalties for recreational and performance-enhancing drugs. Last week, the NFL suspended Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Dwayne Bowe for the season opener for violating the drug policy, even though a charge of marijuana possession filed against him in November subsequently was dropped.
Update: Jason LaCanfora is reporting that Blount is NOT facing charges from the incident.
We'll have more on this story as it develops, though it's no sure thing that Bell will miss any games this season as this works its way through the legal system. The fact that it's a misdemeanor in Pennsylvania works in his favor, but as the article mentioned, the league doesn't need a conviction to hand down a suspension. Bowe was charged in November of last year, but wasn't suspended until last week, so it may be a while before this gets sorted out. Due to workload concerns, we have had Bell ranked lower than most for the entire summer and this doesn't make us any more likely to recommend him in the early rounds.