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Le'Veon Bell ruled out for Wild Card against Ravens

The Pittsburgh Steelers turned the light out on the possibility of Le'Veon Bell playing in Saturday's Wild Card matchup with the Baltimore Ravens.

The team announced Friday that it ruled out Bell, who suffered a hyperextended knee in Week 17.

Bell told NFL Media's Aditi Kinkhabwala on Thursday that he didn't attempt to run because he didn't feel comfortable testing the knee.

Coach Mike Tomlin told reporters earlier in the week that his team was preparing to play as if the best dual-threat running back in the NFL wouldn't be able to play.

Rookie Josh Harris will likely see the bulk of the backfield action Saturday. Dri Archer can play a role as pass-catcher out of the backfield on passing downs, and newly signed Ben Tate could also see action in a committee attack.

Harris flashed some speed on a 59-yard scamper in Week 17 that was ultimately called back due to a penalty. However, he has just 16 yards on nine carries this season. Bell, in particular, displayed confidence this week that the rookie could handle the load if needed.

Facing a stout Ravens run defense, ranked No. 4 in the NFL allowing just 88.2 yards per contest, it would have been a tough proposition for Pittsburgh even with Bell. Without the All-Pro running back, expect Ben Roethlisberger to sling the pigskin often against a suspect Ravens secondary.

Tomlin noted earlier this week that there would be no excuses come Saturday if they didn't have their team MVP on the field. The Steelers will now have to prove that sentiment true.

The latest Around The NFL Podcast previews this weekend's four Wild-Card matchups and predicts who will advance. Find more Around The NFL content on NFL NOW.

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