The Jets announced they are holding the All-Pro running back out of their preseason opener against the cross-stadium New York Giants on Thursday night, broadcast on NFL Network at 7 p.m. ET.
New York had been hesitant to let on whether Bell would play against Big Blue. Jets coach Adam Gase said Tuesday, "It's a fine line with Le'Veon. He hasn't played in a year. At the same time, when's the right time? Is it this game? Is it the next one? Is it the next one [after that]? Do we just not play him this preseason? Do we go through the whole time and just give him [practice] reps? All those questions, those are what we keep talking about."
Bell has not played in an NFL game -- preseason, regular season or postseason -- in 571 days, since the Pittsburgh Steelers' postseason loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars on Jan. 14, 2018. New York signed him to a four-year deal in free agency after Bell sat out the entire 2018 season, his last in Pittsburgh.
His first appearance could come next week when Gang Green travels to Atlanta on Aug. 15.
Also not playing for the Jets are running back Bilal Powell, center Ryan Kalil, safety Marcus Maye and defensive linemen Steve McLendon and Leonard Williams.
On the Giants' sideline, quarterback Eli Manning will start and play one series before Daniel Jones takes over, while running back Saquon Barkley will not play, NFL Network's Kimberly Jones reported.
Catch the New York Jets and New York Giants preseason tilt Thursday, live on NFL Network at 7 p.m. ET.