The Steelers Bud Dupree has turned into a stout outside linebacker who needs to be kept around.
The Steelers defense has become very effective this year and it is because they are creating a lot of turnovers. They are also keeping opposing offenses down in the amount of scoring. This is reminiscent of the Steelers of old.
The effectiveness of the Steelers defense during the end of the Cowher era and into the whole Tomlin era has been marked by great outside linebacker play. The defense is effective based on whether the Steelers are getting pressure and sacks from their outside linebackers.
The front four in any defense is the key to getting pressure and the Black & Gold have been able to get pressure from the inside in recent memory. Now the defense is exploding because they are getting pressure from not only their interior but also the edge rushers.
If the Black & Gold want to keep their front four pressure in 2019, they will need to keep Bud Dupree. I know they will probably lose Javon Hargrave in the middle, but he will be replaced by a recovered Stephon Tuitt on the inside.
What I am saying is the Steelers can afford to lose Javon Hargrave, but they can’t afford to lose Bud Dupree.
The Bold move that could make this possible
Our own Tommy Jaggi wrote about how the Steelers will be up against the cap in 2020. This from the outset makes it seem as if the Black & Gold will be unable to keep Bud Dupree.
This radical move is not something I expect the Steelers to do although I credit Kevin Colbert for being more aggressive with trades. However, the Steelers don’t usually sell players and that is what I am suggesting they do.
I know everybody loves David Decastro, but I think trading him makes a lot of sense. Here’s why: He is getting up there in age and next season he will be 30. This makes it a prime time to trade him because he is still at the peak of his career but is going to be on the downswing.
I know I will upset a lot of people when I say he is overrated. I think he is a very good right guard, but I don’t think he is Pro Bowl worthy on the field. He has had some injuries that he was played through an that has created a decline in play in recent years.
What trade would do would create some cap space for Bud Dupree. If the Steelers trade David Decastro, they would incur a $6,595,000 in dead money but they would have a cap savings of $7,052,500 according to Over the Cap. That could be the cap space the Black & Gold need to sign Bud Dupree.
I know this will sting even for me. Decastro is a great guy who always says the right things. He also has a hard-working mentality and was smart enough to get an engineering degree from Stanford while playing PAC 12 football.
The Black & Gold could also get good value for Decastro. He is a Pro Bowler and a first-round pick. There are plenty of teams who want to bolster their offensive line. I think the Steelers could command a first-round pick for Decastro.
Also, understand that the Steelers will be able to bring down the cap number for some extensions like Cam Heyward and Alejandro Villanueva. I think this would make it possible to keep Bud Dupree.