Sports

Titans To Sign OLB Bud Dupree

7:39pm: The Titans’ pursuit of Dupree will produce a contract agreement. Dupree will sign with Tennessee, Pelissero and Ian Rapoport of NFL.com report (on Twitter). While the terms are not fully known, Rapoport tweets the former Steelers sack artist will receive $16.5MM annually on a multiyear deal.

7:14pm: In need of pass-rushing help, the Titans have identified a target. They are going after longtime Steelers edge defender Dupree, with NFL.com’s Mike Garafolo and Tom Pelissero reporting (via Twitter) Tennessee is making a strong push for the five-year vet.

The edge rusher market, deeper than in recent years, is moving fast. Leonard Floyd, Matt Judon and Yannick Ngakoue have chosen teams. The Titans are trying to close out a deal to take another outside pressure artist off the board.

The Browns are also in the mix for Dupree, per Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports (on Twitter). However, some in the Steelers organization expect Dupree to end up with the Titans.

Dupree’s deal will be interesting; he is still rehabbing from the ACL tear he suffered late in the regular season. The Steelers are not expected to re-sign the former first-round pick. They used their franchise tag on Dupree last season, and he has become a key part of a pass rush that has led the NFL in sacks from 2017-20. Dupree broke through in his initial contract year, registering 11.5 sacks in 2019. The Steelers saw the Kentucky alum post eight sacks in 11 games, but the knee injury will affect his market.

Missing out on J.J. Watt, the Browns may need to strike quickly on the edge rusher front. They have been rumored for weeks to be prepared to sign a big-name bookend for Myles Garrett. While the Browns have been connected to Von Miller, with the Broncos’ option decision on the future Hall of Famer still undetermined, but the free agent group is thinning.

Tennessee posted one of the worst third-down defensive efforts in modern NFL history last season, and GM Jon Robinson’s additions of Jadeveon Clowney and Vic Beasley failed. Dupree would represent a gamble, given his injury and inconsistency, but the Titans need to add help here to team with Harold Landry. Tennessee already agreed to terms with D-lineman Denico Autry; a Dupree add as well would help Landry and Jeffrey Simmons considerably.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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