LeGarrette Blount saw red zone work with the Steelers' starting unit in Saturday night's preseason opener against the Giants. RB LeVeon Bell started for the team and took the first two carries before Blount was substituted in to handle work inside the 20-yard-line. Blount also stayed on the field for a third-down play, something that's not been a typical manner of usage in Blount's past with the Buccaneers and Patriots. When asked about the workload split, Blount said "I don't know how they're going to (split up playing time)," but added "ain't nobody going to sign me to sit me."
It was surprising to see Blount on the field for a third down, and it's not a development Le'Veon Bell's owners should be excited about. Additionally, it looks very likely now that Blount will handle a great deal of the Steelers' red zone work. At 6-feet and 250lbs, Blount is built to do heavy lifting up the middle. Bell took 85% of the Steelers red zone carries last season, highest in the league. Bell scored eight times last year, but all eight touchdowns came on red zone carries. He did not score a single touchdown from outside the 20-yard-line. If Bell loses a substantial portion of that work, as it looks like he might, his fantasy production could drop off severely. Bell is being drafted as the eighth RB overall - a spot that may be too high with Blount getting into the mix this season.