Steelers OLB Bud Dupree is on the Browns free-agent radar.
In Browns rumors, Steelers free agent Bud Dupree is apparently on Cleveland’s radar, according to Cleveland.com’s Mary Kay Cabot.
It was surprising to read, as Cabot discussed the Browns interest in a recent, “Hey, Mary Kay” column.
For one thing, Dupree is coming off season ending ACL injury he suffered in Week 12. For what it’s worth, the Steelers recently said Dupree’s rehab is on schedule.
Then, there’s the issue of his fit. Dupree’s spent his entire career with the Steelers, playing in a 3-4 scheme as an outside linebacker. In Cleveland, he’d likely be asked to put his hand in the dirt. Maybe it would work, maybe it wouldn’t. If the Browns can get him on a team friendly, short contract, great. The Dawg Pound would love to find out if Dupree can reak havoc wearing an orange helmet.
If they can’t get him on a short-term deal, I don’t know how Andrew Berry could seriously consider luring Dupree to town. It just doesn’t make sense.
Other free agents supposedly on Cleveland’s radar include Bengals edge rusher Carl Lawson, Cardinals’ LB Haason Reddick, New Orleans Trey Hendrickson and Tampa’s Shaq Barrett. These other options would also be optimal after the Browns missed out on J.J. Watt.
Hendrickson and Lawson seem like much more viable options and should come cheaper than Barrett. Hendrickson had 14.5 sacks last season, but he’s a late bloomer. I’d be cautious to give him a massive deal based on one season of production. Lawson would be my preferred choice, but we’re still waiting to see if the Bengals drop the franchise tag on the defensive end.
With cap space at their disposal and a great need to get better on defense, look for the Browns to do something once they’re aloud to start negotiating March 15. They’ve got 20 players whose contracts are expiring. All of the moves may. not be splashy, but there will be players movement.
Plus, there’s the business of taking care of their own.
It feels more and more likely that Baker Mayfield will get a contract extension before the start of the season, especially after seeing Dak Prescott sign his extension. If the Browns wait and Mayfield excels, his figure is only going to go up.
After Mayfield, the rest of the dominoes can begin to fall (Denzel Ward and Nick Chubb).