Dallas Cowboys

Doug Free’s replacement? Tackle Byron Bell signs with Dallas Cowboys

The Dallas Cowboys' slow, deliberate and thrifty approach to free agency took another measured step on Friday when they signed free agent offensive tackle Byron Bell to a one-year deal.

Bell started 16 games at right tackle for Tennessee Titans in 2015 before missing all last season with a dislocated ankle.

Bell, who grew up just east of Dallas in Greenville, went undrafted out of New Mexico in 2011 before signing with the Carolina Panthers. He started 12 games as a rookie, 15 games in 2012, 14 in 2013 and 15 in 2014 before joining the Titans.

He could be the answer at right tackle, which was created by Doug Free's unexpected retirement.

The Cowboys are targeting 2015 third-round pick Chaz Green for Free's spot, but he has been injured the past two years and remains unproven. Bell would give them a veteran option if doesn't step up. It would also allow them to keep La'el Collins at left guard.

Collins has been considered an option to move to right tackle as insurance for Green.

The Cowboys have already signed Jonathan Cooper for added depth at guard.

Clarence Hill: 817-390-7760, @clarencehilljr

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