Mike Tomlin playing it cool over Le'Veon Bell

LeVeon Bell tossing the ball

Mike Tomlin playing it cool over Le'Veon Bell

Le'Veon Bell was not at the Pittsburgh Steelers' practice on Monday.

Center Maurkice Pouncey said Monday that he anticipates Bell rejoining the team Wednesday when the players resume practicing after an off day.

"When he gets here, that's when we'll start quantifying Le'Veon Bell-related things", Tomlin said Tuesday. Bell signed his tender on Labor Day last season and was ready in time for the opener.

Heading into the season with Super Bowl aspirations, the Steelers need to get Bell's situation figured out. It's fine. He showed up a year ago at the same time.

On that note, Ed Bouchette of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette offered an observation (however obvious) the Steelers are preparing to start James Conner in Bell's place on Sunday. The former Pitt star made significant strides during training camp.

Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin said the team is "singularly focused on the guys being here".

"James - the status and condition and approach of James", Tomlin said.

"[He's gone from] being a rookie that missed a lot of time due to soft tissue injuries and lack of general readiness, to a guy that's done the things that we've outlined several minutes in here", Tomlin said.

The 26-year-old had showcased that in the 2017 campaign where he finished third with 1,291 rushing yards and nine touchdowns along with a career-high 85 receptions for 655 receiving yards and a pair of touchdowns.

Last year, Conner rushed for 144 yards on 32 carries before a Week 15 knee injury ended his season. In July, Le'Veon tweeted that he envisioned 2018 being his best season to date, as of right now that's looking rather unlikely, at least in a Steelers' uniform. Now he finds himself atop the depth chart until Bell arrives. Conner has also drawn raves for his improvement as a receiver out of the backfield - a weakness last summer - and his work in pass protection.

Trump asks if Bob Woodward is 'Dem operative' amid explosive book details
American Airlines may cancel some flights because of Tropical Storm Gordon