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Posted: Wednesday April 4, 2012 1:34PM ; Updated: Wednesday April 4, 2012 4:39PM

Eagles agree to 5-year deal with LT Bell

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PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- Demetress Bell will get a chance to replace Jason Peters again in a different city.

The Philadelphia Eagles agreed Wednesday to a five-year contract with Bell, hoping the former Bills left tackle can fill in for injured All-Pro Peters.

"Demetress was one of the top free agent offensive linemen available this year and we are happy to be able to add him to our squad," coach Andy Reid said. "We had a chance to meet him over the weekend and study him extensively on tape and we came away quite impressed with what we saw and heard.

"He's a great athlete."

Bell, 6-foot-5 and 311 pounds, started 30 games in four seasons in Buffalo. A seventh-round pick in 2008, Bell became a starter after Peters was traded to Philadelphia. Peters, who went to his fifth Pro Bowl in January, ruptured his right Achilles tendon last week and had surgery on Tuesday. It's uncertain whether he'll return in 2012.

"Demetress is a guy we've followed since he joined the league," general manager Howie Roseman said. "He's a big, athletic left tackle and he has quite a few games of experience under his belt with Buffalo. He'll excel with our style of play on the offensive line."

Bell was limited to just six games last year because of a shoulder injury. The 27-year-old Bell didn't play organized football until he went to Northwestern State on a basketball scholarship. He joined the football team as a defensive end after redshirting as a freshman and switched to the offensive line a year later.

Bell's first name previously was spelled Demetrius.

Copyright 2012 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

 
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