The NFL this morning suspended Steelers running back Le'Veon Bell for the first three games of the season for a violation of the league's substance abuse policy, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter:
Pitt RB LeVeon Bell suspended 3 games, fined additional game check for violating substance abuse policy, per league sources. He is appealing— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) April 9, 2015
Bell is one of the NFL's best running backs, and in 2014 he rushed for 1,361 yards and eight touchdowns while averaging 4.7 yard per carry, adding 83 receptions for 854 yards and three scores. So to lose Bell for three games is a significant loss for the Steelers (even while they knew a suspension was coming) and it's a big blow to the reigning AFC North champions, who will be without arguably their best player for the first three weeks of the season.
The Indianapolis Colts will play the Steelers in Pittsburgh again this year, though the schedule has yet to be announced. Could that game be in the first three weeks of the season? It might not make a ton of sense for the NFL to schedule two of the AFC's top teams against each other when one of the league's best players won't be able to play in that game, but there's certainly a chance that the two teams could play in the first three weeks since they will indeed play at some point next season. And if the Colts were to play the Steelers in the first three weeks of the season, it would be a nice boost for the team's chances of winning in Pittsburgh - though they'd still have to stop Ben Roethlisberger, something they didn't do in 2014.
Also of note is another running back who was suspended by the NFL, as the Patriots' LeGarrette Blount was suspended for the first week of the season. It would have been nice if the Colts could have played the Patriots during that suspension, but it won't happen - the Patriots are guaranteed to host the first game of the season since they are the defending Super Bowl champions, but the Colts and the Patriots will play in Indianapolis next year. So there's no way that the Colts will miss Blount due to his suspension, but there's still a chance that they could miss Bell. It all depends on how the schedule turns out, which we should find out within a few weeks.