As the commish for my league, I contacted ESPN about that designation. They replied, the team placed that designation on Bell and there was nothing they could do. I suggested they should create a new designation for contract holdouts like those players suspended, with no reply to that. Now, since the rule states a player must have an “out” designation to be placed on IR, there is nothing that can be done this year.
I will be proposing the “LeVeon Bell” rules change next year to specifically state that players that are contract holdouts cannot be placed on IR even with an official “Out” designation.