"We are disappointed Le'Veon Bell has not signed his franchise tender and rejoined his teammates," said general manager Kevin Colbert in a statement Monday. "Coach Tomlin and the coaching staff will continue to focus on preparing the players on our roster for our regular season opener on Sunday against the Cleveland Browns."
Bell was a no-show at the team's facility Monday and has a $14.5 million franchise tender waiting for him.
Last season, Bell took his physical Sept. 1 and showed up for practice Sept. 4, a Monday, before playing a full season on a $12.12 million franchise tag.
Bell, who has averaged nearly 130 yards per game since entering the league in 2013, would forfeit $853,000 for every game week he goes unsigned.
Bell stayed away from the team as a way to avoid injury and exercise his leverage under the tag.
James Conner is the Steelers' lead back in Bell's absence.