Dec 22, 2013; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Lions running back Joique Bell (35) stiff arms New York Giants free safety Ryan Mundy (21) during the second quarter at Ford Field. Giants beat the Lions 23-20. Mandatory Credit: Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports

Barry Sanders: Joique Bell can be ‘great’ for Detroit Lions


When Barry Sanders says the Detroit Lions are lucky to have you and you’re the player he enjoys running the football in today’s game, then Joique Bell ought to be feeling pretty humbled to receive this praise from the all-time great.

“I think we’re definitely lucky to have Joique,” Sanders, told MLive.com in a story posted Friday. “He has a great style. Physical. And he stays within himself. He’s gotten a lot of great yards and really been an asset to the offense. He’s carved out a niche for himself in this offense with Reggie Bush, and I really do enjoy watching him play. Great story.”

Bell played second fiddle to Bush last year after Bush came to Detroit as a free agent, but Bell was a valuable member to the Lions and often outplayed Bush for stretches during the season when Bush had issues with ball security and finished with 1,197 yards rushing and receiving and eight touchdowns.

“If you have that skill set he has, it’s just about confidence and getting the reps in live action,” Sanders said. “Developing the confidence of the coaching staff and getting the ball in situations. He’s from a small school, but he can be great. He’s a lot of fun to watch.”

Bell is a restricted free agent and hopes to receive a long-term deal to remain in Detroit. This endorsement from Sanders should be a nice feather in his cap when it comes to negotiations.

Tags: Barry Sanders Detroit Lions Joique Bell