Bud Dupree tore his ACL last December, but the need to rehab that injury didn’t stop the Titans from signing him to a five-year, $82.5 million contract as a free agent this offseason.
Giving Dupree that kind of deal off a serious injury shows how big of a need the Titans have in their pass rush. They produced just 19 sacks and 72 quarterback hits last season, which didn’t stop them from winning the AFC South but still stood out as a glaring hole on the team.
Dupree said this month that it is “no secret” why the Titans signed him, but noted during a Wednesday appearance on NFL Network that he has to do more than pressure quarterbacks to help his new team.
“Anytime you get paid to pass rush, you go ahead and get sacks and make big plays in the run game, be an all-around player,” Dupree said. “You don’t just come in just to be a one-trick pony and just do pass rush. You’ve got to be able to be a tone-setter on the edge, as well, swarming to the ball, stopping the run, evolving your teammates, getting everybody hyped up. That’s what it is, man. That excites everybody around you, and that’s a big part of the game, in today’s game, especially. We’ve got to go out and be tough, tough as nails, go out there and just play to our best ability.”
Dupree has said he expects to be full speed for training camp and the Titans would welcome that in all areas of their defense.