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Packers OT Byron Bell contract: Big signing bonus all but guarantees roster spot

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Byron Bell’s $500,000 signing bonus strongly suggests he will make the Packers’ opening roster.

NFL: Dallas Cowboys at Arizona Cardinals Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

It appears the Green Bay Packers value Byron Bell as more than just a camp body. According to ESPN’s Field Yates, Bell’s contract includes a $500,000 signing bonus, enough to effectively ensure the veteran offensive tackle will make the team’s Week 1 roster.

Bell’s contract doesn’t significantly impact the Packers’ salary cap situation, but it should keep him around Green Bay for 2018. In addition to the large signing bonus, the deal includes an $850,000 base salary and $362,000 in bonuses and incentives.

Bell, a seven-year NFL veteran with 74 starts under his belt, signed with the Packers earlier this week. With Bryan Bulaga still recovering from a torn ACL and backups Jason Spriggs and Kyle Murphy struggling during their first two seasons, it seems as though Green Bay might have added Bell to battle for the starting right tackle job. Alternatively, Bell could factor into the open competition at right guard, the position most recently occupied by Jahri Evans. In either case, the signing bonus suggests that Bell will make the final roster.

The Packers will resume organized team activities Friday and continue the offseason workouts next week.