Pittsburgh Steelers second-rounder Le'Veon Bell is already emerging as the heavy favorite in his battle with veterans Jonathan Dwyer, Isaac Redman and LaRod Stephens-Howling for the starting running back job.

The Steelers have announced the signing of Bell to a four-year contract on Monday, leaving the former Michigan State star free from worry about missing practice this summer.

As a physical, all-purpose back with nimble feet and soft hands, Bell is a good bet to lead all NFL rookies in touches this season. Some observers are even predicting 300 touches in a workhorse role.

Even if Bell puts a strangle-hold on the starting job this summer, he's going to be challenged to live up to the post-draft hype. Offensive coordinator Todd Haley credits Bell with sharing "Eddie George physical traits" while ESPN's John Clayton has noted that the Steelers believe they have "the next version of Matt Forte" with their rookie.