Friday, May 1, 2015

Hey, Pittsburgh! This Bud's For You! - Steelers Select OLB Alvin Dupree in 1st Round of 2015 NFL Draft

"I think when you make that ['drafting for need'] comment, you're not doing your due diligence," Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin said on Monday. "....Invariably it takes care of itself."

At the 2015 NFL Draft in Chicago on Thursday night, it did just that. 

Especially regarding the first round, the Steelers grip as tightly to their "best player available" philosophy as Gollum did to The Ring. So it should be no surprise that they remained cool under fire as potential prospective choices were taken in front of them. Yet, they were true to themselves and fulfilled need at the same time when they selected Kentucky edge rusher Alvin "Bud" Dupree with the 22nd pick.

Nonetheless, that isn't to say they weren't pleasantly surprised when the projected left outside linebacker 'fell into their laps' as he did. 

"We’re really excited. The other day during the press conference we talked about the outside linebacker position being very deep with several impact players,” said GM Kevin Colbert, “and we believe we got an impact player in Bud Dupree. It’s really exciting that he was able to be there for us at No. 22. Quite honestly that was something we didn’t expect to happen." -

Invariably it takes care of itself.

The senior DE/OLB ended his Wildcat career starting 35 of 47 games where he recorded 23.5 sacks (half of a sack per game played), 38 tackles for a loss, four forced fumbles and an interception for a touchdown. Dupree also ranked in the top three among LBs in the 40-yard dash, vertical jump and the broad jump at the NFL Combine. - 

Per Mike Prisuta of the DVE Morning Show, a "scout from a team not drafting Dupree on Dupree said: 'Has it all, quickness, power, intangibles. Will play well first year. He's going to be good.'" -

Dupree is not without his flaws, either, though. He is very raw and sometimes he looked better with his hand on the ground than he when he was standing up. 

He can at times be an inconsistent pass rusher who doesn’t always exhibit good hand use. His speed rush can also be a little out of control, he doesn't have a great array of pass rushes/pass rush moves in his repertoire, and has trouble consistently anchoring against the run. 

The overall body of work, though, paints a portrait of a player who has loads of upside and the potential to one day enter the pantheon of great Steelers linebackers. 

For now, though, he's only asked to learn the system and to eventually contribute with the starters and the rest of the team in the push for another Ring. And the rest of it, my 'great linebackers' comments...? 

Invariably it takes care of itself.