The Tennessee Titans organized team activities took an ugly turn in the first day of work as right tackle Byron Bell suffered a gruesome dislocated ankle and is likely out for the entire season.
Bell, who was re-signed by the Titans to a one-year deal after splitting time mostly between right tackle and left guard a year ago, sustained the injury toward the end of OTA work on Tuesday when his left leg got caught and twisted, sending him to the ground writhing in pain with his foot pointed in a different direction than normal.
“I know it’s dislocated. Beyond that, I don’t know all the medical terms. He’ll be out for the season,” Titans coach Mike Mularkey said after practice.
Bell was lauded by Mularkey for his hard work during the off-season
“’Bear’ has really had a great off-season. He’s really worked hard,” Mularkey said. “That’s the first thing he said, ‘I’ve worked so hard to have it end like this.’ Those are the kinds of injuries that are going to happen in this game. It’s unfortunate for him and unfortunate for us. He’s a good football player, and we’re going to miss him.”
Bell was one of the Titans most versatile linemen, and was in the running as a strong candidate likely for a backup spot this season. He played the first seven games of the year at left guard, then eight games at right tackle for Tennessee and the moved to left tackle for an injured Taylor Lewan in the season finale.
“He was going to compete for one. The good thing about ‘Bear’ is he can play so many different positions. That loss is greater than you think, because he can play inside and outside on both sides,” Mularkey said.
Right guard Chance Warmack was upset by the injury.
“Me and Byron are really close. That was pretty traumatic for me. I didn’t expect anything like that to happen on the first day,” Warmack said. “I’ve seen that happen before with (Brian) Schwenke, and that’s never a good look. You work out with these guys every day, and to see Byron go down like that, it’s never a good situation.”