Josh Bell Not Invited To Ring Ceremony

Placed on injured reserve early in camp last August, Bell was not invited to the Super Bowl ring ceremony taking place in Green Bay tomorrow.

Most Packer fans remember Josh Bell, if they remember him at all, as the dime back who gave up the winning touchdown pass against the Steelers in 2009 after the Packers picked him up mid-way through the season. They probably don't remember the fact that he was placed on injured reserve shortly after the beginning of training camp last August.

It would seem the Packers are doing their own version of forgetting.

The below popped up late Tuesday night on the Twitter page of one Nzone Sports Management Agency:

Trying to figure out why a GB Packer player on the roster for the entire 2011 season was not invited to get a ring in GB this week? Hmmmm?

The player in question is Josh Bell.

This is a curious move by the Packers. Bell was on the roster the entire year after being placed on IR, unlike Will Blackmon who the team reached an injury settlement with and then waived. He even got a Super Bowl check for being on the roster when the team won Super Bowl XLV. Of course, that was paid by the league. The Packers are paying for the players and a guest to come to Green Bay for the ring ceremony tomorrow. I would hate to find out the Packers were simply trying to save a few bucks by not inviting Bell but then getting him his ring some other way.

Whatever the reason, I am perplexed as to why the Packers would choose to go this route. I've reached out to the team to see what, if any, reasons they have for excluding a member of the team from the ring ceremony tomorrow. It's just another curious move from inside of 1265 Lombardi Avenue.

UPDATE:

Packers Interim Director of Public Relations, Aaron Popkey, sent me the following response this afternoon:

We haven’t discussed those details publicly. We feel it’s an internal matter, mainly out of respect for everyone involved.

I also spoke to Bell's agent, Frederick Lyles, earlier this afternoon. He told me he was "surprised and confused" as to why the Packers have chosen to go this route when it comes to Bell. He also said his repeated calls to the Packers have gone unreturned.

UPDATE II: As Tom Silverstein points out, Bell was offered an injury settlement last summer and chose not to take it. That means the team did indeed try to jettison him prior to the season, but Bell chose to stick with the team. The Packers actions become a little more understandable in that case.

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Comments (24)

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ooginator's picture

June 15, 2011 at 06:17 am

I think I can understand. He was a bit part player at best, didn't play at all last year or really help the team in previous years (like Al Harris). He isn't a Barnett or a Finley so this is unlikely to be as big as news story as the whole 'team picture' thing and he is unlikely to be back with the team this year.
Saying that I still think they should have invited him to the ceremony, if only to avoid potential media backlash.

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PackerAaron's picture

June 15, 2011 at 08:24 am

If he truly is "unlikely to be back with the team" - why keep him around all year? Why not reach an injury settlement and release him? The fact they kept him on the roster all season is what makes this perplexing to me.

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Chris K's picture

June 15, 2011 at 06:13 pm

Here's your answer: the Packers offered him an injury settlement and he declined the offer in turn staying with the Packers. The Packers or any team for that matter may NOT cut an injured/rehabbing player.
He stuck on this team as a technicality. He wouldn't have been on it and it was his choice to turn down that offer when the Packers tried to "lose" him with an injury settlement and the fact he was buried on the depth chart anyways.......

STORY OVER

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PackerAaron's picture

June 15, 2011 at 06:23 pm

This is correct - just read Silverstein's post. Updated the post above.

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al's picture

June 15, 2011 at 09:50 pm

Wasn’t that addressed in the story above? Read much?

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PackerAaron's picture

June 16, 2011 at 07:49 am

Easy Albert. The first comment was left prior to the two updates being posted. At ease soldier.

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al's picture

June 16, 2011 at 05:42 pm

Hey I'm a sailor not a soldier!

And any chance I get to be a smart ass I will take it! With or without cause!

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sammer's picture

June 15, 2011 at 08:58 am

Are we sure this wasn't just a mistake?

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PackerAaron's picture

June 15, 2011 at 09:01 am

That's why I reached out to the Packers.

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PackerAaron's picture

June 15, 2011 at 12:23 pm

Just spoke to Bell's agent. This was not a mistake. They aren't even returning his calls asking why his client is being excluded.

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yogamon's picture

June 15, 2011 at 09:49 am

Why does lame stuff like this always seem to happen? Remember photogate? Lack of class in my opinion. The Packers need a tsar of class to save them from themselves.

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Wamzlee's picture

June 15, 2011 at 10:12 am

That is weird. I think Josh Bell should be invited. Perhaps the invite got lost?

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NoWayJose's picture

June 15, 2011 at 12:33 pm

Two thoughts:

1. The Packers PR department strikes again. Too many gaffes from these guys.

2. Like the SB photo business, the underlying reason might have something to do with how Bell "handled" being put on IR. It is possible that he left GB and didn't participate in any team events since early August. Maybe this is the team's way of "punishing" that behavior. Either way, it all comes accross as unecessarily petty (See #1).

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Jer's picture

June 15, 2011 at 03:12 pm

Why do the Packers do this to themselves? Now we've got this cloud hanging over what should be a joyous occassion. Granted it's a small controversy, but it's one so easily avoided.

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PackerAaron's picture

June 15, 2011 at 03:17 pm

My feelings as well.

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Martin's picture

June 15, 2011 at 03:36 pm

This doesn't cast any clouds over the ring ceremony. The league pays for 150 rings and teams hand them out to whomever they please. If Bell deserved a ring, the Pack would have given him one.

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Colin's picture

June 15, 2011 at 07:42 pm

Not true. The NFL pays for 150 rings, yes, but they only provide $x many dollars for those rings (the Saints got a $5k stipend per ring).

Given that it seems each winner wants to one up the previous years' winner in bling factor, the costs go up. The costs of the ring I'm sure are between $20-30k.

So should the Pack pay probably $25k for a player who played in 4 games last year, 0 games this year, and collected his full salary b/c he refused the injury settlement offered...I don't think so.

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cow42's picture

June 15, 2011 at 04:30 pm

-the team not getting together (whether you think player get-togethers are useful or not).
.....
-rodgers "posing" at the kentucky derby.
.....
-rodgers and his record label.
.....
-jennings getting into acting.
.....
driver talkin' HOF (quite possibly my favorite Packer ever but SERIOUSLY?)
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-bell not being invited to the ring ceremony.
.....
-you KNOW barnett's gonna be an issue if/when camp opens up.
.....
-how much you wanna bet green shows up tippin' the scales at about 400?
.....
the damn season better start soon so i can stop worrying about this team.

for some reason i feel like my worst fears may be coming to fruition... the only team that can beat the Packers is THE PACKERS.

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Mikey's picture

June 15, 2011 at 04:32 pm

Who cares, we only have one side of the story. The guy should be happy he was A.)on a team B.)pulling a paycheck at all.

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Andrew's picture

June 15, 2011 at 05:09 pm

Bell refused the injury settlement. He chose to stick around to rehab. The Pack were done with him. They cannot just release an injured player. In the absense of drama alot of you are creating it. The packers are in good shape for this coming year. These players are allowed to have outside interests. Relax people. There is no PR hit with this one if you look closely. Who cares what the perception is. The Pack take great care of their players. They were just voted the top franchise in all pro sports. There is way more positive going on than the nit-picky "PR" problems. Super Bowl Champions!!!

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bigfog's picture

June 15, 2011 at 06:13 pm

Boy, this is lame. I'm disappointed in my team today.

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Chris K's picture

June 15, 2011 at 06:18 pm

Dont be... They operate a first-class organization and Josh Bell turned down the offer when he wasn't going to "make the cut" anyways.

He knew the foot injury would keep him out most of the year and gambled saying I can earn just alittle bit more money by sticking around ALL year long on I.R. even though the Packers want me to sign this injury settlement and be done.

It was his business decision and he was NOT a part of the team not their plans for quite awhile.

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al's picture

June 15, 2011 at 09:59 pm

Seems pretty simple to me, did he contribute at all to the team getting to and winning the Super Bowl?? NO. Did he contribute to anything what so ever on the field during the season?? NO. Why does this guy even get a ring or a check? I guess that goes for the rest of the guys that didnt play a single down during the season. From a personnal stand point I don't think I could be mad about not getting an invite when I know deep down I didn't contribute shit to the team, hes not even on the team as far as I am concerned.

Having said that I do agree why even mess with it as far as the packers PR group goes? why not just invite him who really cares, since someone already wasted the time making him a ring.

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Jeff's picture

June 18, 2011 at 01:20 pm

There were also reports that Bell was having parties introducing himself as Josh Bell of the Super Bowl Champion Green Bay Packers. There has to be more to this story. I personnaly don't think he deserves one. He was only on the roster because of a technicality. They wanted to unload him.

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