According to NFL.com, Martavis Bryant has been cleared to participate in regular-season practices and games by NFL. Steelers’ wide receiver has missed the entire 2016 campaign after violating league’s policy on substances of abuse on several occasions. He was conditionally reinstated in April, with the league asking him to attend mandatory counseling sessions. He obviously took this seriously, since as of Friday, he will be able to participate in all preseason activities including games and practices after missing two weeks of training camp.
Bryant has been handed at least one-year suspension in March 2016 and he decided not to appeal against it at the time. The odds didn’t look good for Bryant to make the comeback. From 2010 to 2015, 11 NFL players received at least one year suspension for violating league’s policy on substances of abuse. Only Johnny Jolly managed to make a comeback and play in the NFL once again.
Martavis Bryant was drafted by the Pittsburgh Steelers in the 4th round of 2014 NFL Draft as the 118th overall pick. He immediately picked up Pittsburgh Steelers Rookie of the Year award, 26 receptions, 549 receiving yards, and 8 touchdowns in 10 games played. The following season, he played 11 games having 50 receptions, 765 receiving yards, and 6 touchdowns. After missing 2016 season completely, Bryant will surely be eager to make his mark in 2017.
Return of Bryant isn’t the only good news for the Pittsburgh Steelers. The reports are in that Le’Veon Bell visited the team’s facilities on Friday which probably means he will sing the $12.1 million franchise tender. Steelers and Bell were in conversations about the long-term deal for a while, but they couldn’t find an agreement. Now, arguably the best running back in the NFL will have another season to prove he is worth the big money.