If All-Pro Dallas Cowboys left tackle Tyron Smith can't take the field against the Seattle Seahawks this Sunday, backup Byron Bell will need to step up.
And in the past that's been an issue. But he played well, for the most part, last Sunday against Oakland.
Per the Dallas Morning News, offensive coordinator Scott Linehan and tight end Jason Witten lauded him Thursday for otherwise integrating smoothly. He handled some blocks without extra help, Linehan said. He gets the camaraderie necessary for an offensive line to excel, Witten said. He held up on a solo block as Prescott rushed for a go-ahead touchdown late in the third quarter.
"Thank God Dak got in there," Bell said. "He made everybody look good."
On Sunday, Bell doesn't know how much or if he'll play, wrote the Morning News. Smith's Monday MRI revealed a sprained LCL atop back, hip and groin injuries he's battled this season. To not have a tear or more severe damage, owner Jerry Jones said, was a "reward."
Smith hasn't practiced this week with the injuries. But Cowboys executive vice president Stephen Jones told 105.3 The Fan that Smith "has a shot" at going. Bell says he's "pretty sure" Smith will start.
"If he can't roll, I'll be ready to play," Bell said. "[But with] what's at stake, I'm pretty sure if we get down to it, he'll figure out a way."
Last Sunday, Smith's lower leg was hit on a failed 3rd-down attempt in the third quarter. Smith walked gingerly off, telling Bell to get ready.
Then Chris Jones faked a punt on 4th-and-11 for 24 yards. Bell was in.
"It was just like 1, 2, 3 and I'm in the game," Bell said Wednesday. "I really didn't get no sets on the sideline which was OK. I just went in there and just relied on my technique and everything paid off."
"But I think with Byron what he brings is just that veteran ability," Witten continued. "That stage is not too big for him."