Roll The Dice on Bud Dupree
(EDITOR’S NOTE: This was submitted before Dupree got the franchise tag, but the same thought process could apply for any non-Jadeveon Clowney EDGEs in this free agent class.)
When the dust settles on the Titans salary-cap situation after bringing back both Tannehill and Henry, the Titans should still have a little bit of wiggle room left for spending, but not much.
It wouldn’t be the ‘flashy, headline-grabbing’ signing that will ignite the Tennessee faithful, but bringing in Bud Dupree from the Steelers would be a solid addition to a Titans roster with a big need at pass-rusher.
Seattle’s Jadeveon Clowney is thought of as the cream of the crop of free-agent pass-rushers in this 2020 class, but a player of his status would come with a cost that the Titans likely wouldn’t be to afford after bringing back their two offensive cornerstones.
At this point in his career, it’s clear that Dupree probably won’t be a team’s top EDGE-rusher, but with the Titans, he wouldn’t need to be. Tennessee hit a home run with drafting Harold Landry in 2018 and he’ll be able to act as the teams’ pass-rushing star while a player like Dupree quietly served as a solid second option.
Dupree had a quiet start to his career, recording six or more sacks just once in his first four years. But the Kentucky product is still young at 27 years old, and had his best year as a pro last season with 11.5 sacks and 16 tackles for loss.
Dupree might be able to surprise people and thrive in a complementary role with the Titans. There aren’t many pieces left to building Tennessee into an elite defense, and Dupree could be the player to make it all come together.