You, me and Dupree


The Steelers' first-round draft pick has gotten a smattering of work with the first-team defense during the first two weeks of OTAs.

"A little bit," outside linebacker Bud Dupree confirmed.

He's also gotten an education.

"It was a great experience learning from the older guys, seeing what they do," Dupree continued. "I just try to make as many plays as I can, get better each and every day."

The Steelers participate in Day 6 of the 2015 Organized Team Activities at the Steelers practice facility.

Dupree, likewise, has nothing but appreciation for the way he's been embraced since draft day.

"The whole linebacker room called me after I got drafted," he said. "James Harrison called me, had a conversation. Jarvis Jones texted me, (Arthur) Moats texted me, Ryan (Shazier) texted me, (Lawrence) Timmons texted me.

"Most of the impact guys, the leaders of the group all hit me up. And then as soon as I came in everybody showed love and just accepted me. They know I'm here to help them get better.

"I'm here to get better, too."

The mentoring of Dupree continues a long-standing Steelers tradition.

The veteran players do what they can to bring the younger players up to speed.

And the veterans do so even though they know it will eventually cost them playing time.

"We're all here for the same goal," Moats explained. "Yes, we're all individuals. But at the same time the team concept overrides individuals.

"I know what I can do and I see what he can do. I feel like with both of us out there rotating or whatever we're going to do we're going to have a lot of success and it's going to make the defense that much better."

Dupree has proven worthy of veteran attention in the early going of OTAs.

"He looks good," Moats assessed. "He definitely has some areas he has to work on but we all do. The beauty is he's not scared of anything and that's what you want."

Jones is in the unique position of being able to advise Dupree as a fellow outside linebacker and as a former No. 1 pick (2013).

"I just tell him control the things that you can control and that's coming out here and working hard every day," Jones said. "Listen to your coaches, come to work with your head on straight and just take advantage of your opportunity. Everything outside of this building doesn't even matter. When you come here lock in, focus and do the things you need to do to be successful.

"He's gonna be a great player. He's very smart. He has all the physical attributes. He's getting great coaching from Coach Porter (outside linebackers coach Joey) so he's learning. He's a fast learner, too. The sky's the limit for him.

"I can't wait to see him once we get to camp."

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