"I don't feel bad about what I did," Le’Veon Bell said

By Helen Murphy
December 11, 2019 01:56 PM
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Credit: Mark Brown/Getty

New York Jets player Le’Veon Bell has confirmed he was out bowling on Saturday night despite missing a game on Sunday with the flu.

On Tuesday, the 27-year-old running back joked about the bowling outing to reporters, saying, “The bigger surprise is I bowled a 251 off the flu … That’s my career-high! Off the sickness”

“I don’t feel bad about what I did,” Bell added, according to ESPN. “I didn’t break any rules. I wasn’t a distraction until now.”

Bell reportedly explained that he wanted to play in Sunday’s game against the Miami Dolphins, but he had lost about nine pounds and staff was worried about his “energy and hydration” levels. (The Jets ended up winning the game 22 to 21.)

“They weren’t sure about my energy and hydration, so they held me out of the game,” he said, according to ESPN. “But they advised me to get out of the house and move a little bit. I had a lot of family and friends there because they were expecting me to play. Everybody was at my house, just kind of looking at me. I felt better, I felt a lot better, so we went out bowling and had fun.”

The New York Post reported that the athlete spent Saturday night at a bowling alley in New Jersey after missing practice on Thursday and Friday and being ruled out of Sunday’s game because of the flu.

The outlet cited multiple sources who said Bell was at the bowling alley from around 10:30 p.m. to 1:00 a.m. local time, wearing easily noticeable orange leather pants. The Post reported that his group had alcohol on their table, but it was unclear if Bell himself was drinking.

Jets coach Adam Gase also responded to Bell’s outing on Tuesday, agreeing that it made the team look bad.

“Yeah, I’d say so,” he said, according to ESPN.

“That wasn’t his fault that we said he’s still contagious,” Gase added. “I mean, that’s what the doctors told him. I’d rather him not be [bowling]. I’d rather him be at home, getting better. But that will be a conversation we have.”

When asked if he would discipline Bell, Gase reportedly responded: “What am I going to discipline him for? I can’t tell him, ‘You have to stay in your house.’ “