The Pittsburgh Steelers signed linebacker Bud Dupree, their first-round selection in the NFL Draft, Thursday to a rookie contract. It brings the total of signed draft picks to six.
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The 6-foot-4, 269-pound former team captain at Kentucky concluded his senior season with 7.5 sacks and 23.5 for his career. He finished second on the Wildcats in tackles with 74 including 12.5 stops for a loss. Dupree added his first career interception against the South Carolina Gamecocks, and returned it six yards for the game-winning touchdown. Some have projected the 2014 All-SEC honorable mention selection to appear at outside linebacker opposite 37-year-old James Harrison.
Earlier on Thursday, the Black and Gold added Penn State tight end Jesse James, their fifth-round selection, to their list of signed picks. His four-year deal should be just under $2.5 million with a signing bonus under $182 thousand.
The Black and Gold have already gotten the names of second-round selection Senquez Golson, cornerback from Ole Miss: fourth-round pick Doran Grant, cornerback from Ohio State; sixth-round selection Leterrius Walton, defensive tackle from Central Michigan; and sixth-round pick Anthony Chickillo, defensive end from Miami inked on the dotted line.
It leaves third-round pick Sammie Coates, wide receiver from Auburn and seventh-round selection Gerod Holliman, safety from Louisville as the remaining unsigned rookies.
Meanwhile around the rest of the internet, Teresa Varley reported on Steelers.com that center Markice Pouncey was No. 83 on the NFL players list of the Top 100 players in the league.
Erik Lambert at NFL Mocks on FanSided in his “NFL Fantasy: Early Sleepers For Week 1 Games” speculates that Steelers running back DeAngelo Williams should be able to take advantage of a rebuilding New England Patriots defense.
Lambert continues here with more off-season projections as he has the Pittsburgh Steelers at No. 5 in his “NFL Power Rankings: Top Five Wide Receiving Corps.”
Still Curtain‘s Craig Gottschalk thinks all the fans should like the fact that wide receiver Antonio Brown did not make the cover of MaddenNFL for the 2015 season. The curse has been avoided.
Bleacher Report wraps it up by placing the Steelers among the AFC’s Top Five squads after the draft. You can check it out here on their Team Stream Now feature.