Bud Dupree is now a member of the Tennessee Titans. But a piece of his heart will always remain in Pittsburgh. Dupree had a great article for the Players Tribune published Wednesday, thanking Pittsburgh and Steelers’ Nation for all the support throughout his career.
Maybe the highlight of the article was Dupree talking about the atmosphere of playing at Heinz Field. Especially when the stadium played a certain song. You know the one.
“You hear that opening line of the song….
“Oh Mama, I’m in fear for my life from the long arm of the law….”
The guy is singing all quiet to begin. But then, there’s this heartbeat sound that comes in and just sets it all the way off.
BOOM … boom, boom.
It’s a loud heartbeat, too. Loud and proud. Just like the city.
BOOM … boom, boom.
On the jumbotron, you got big hit after big hit being shown. It’s me, Cam, T.J., all the guys just layin’ some wood. Then there’s this loud scream in the song, and pretty much everyone in that stadium — players, fans, coaches, everyone — just goes absolutely nuts.
It’s an adrenaline rush like nothing else I’ve ever felt before — goose bumps, man, just straight goose bumps.”
In the article, Dupree reflected on draft day and becoming a first round pick of the Steelers in the 2015 draft. He admitted he didn’t know much of anything about Pittsburgh. But he quickly found out what a special place it was.
“It was all about working hard and doing things that basically reflected the city, and the people of Pittsburgh. It wasn’t anything super complicated or some secret strategy. It was just basically….
But in the form of football players.
Hard work. Blue collar. Shut up and do your job. Look after your teammates. Be accountable. Uphold the standard. Rinse and repeat.
In some ways it was like, The secret is … there is no secret. Step up. Earn respect. Put in work. Carry on the tradition.”
Of course, it wasn’t always easy for Dupree and early in his career, his relationship with the fanbase was strained. Dupree struggled with injuries and as a result, production, for his first three seasons. But the light came on in 2019, no doubt aided by good health, and he put in two stellar seasons with Pittsburgh to finish things up. It was unfortunate how his time with the team ended, a freak torn ACL late in their December victory over the Baltimore Ravens.
His departure out of Pittsburgh isn’t a surprise to anyone. The Steelers simply didn’t have the money to keep him and Dupree deservedly got paid, inking an $85 million deal with the Tennessee Titans. A great fit for a team in desperate need of pass rush help.
I don’t want to spoil the whole article. There’s tons of great stories and nuggets of information worth reading. The section on what playing for Mike Tomlin is like is especially worth checking out. And his love and admiration for Steelers’ Nation, evident even on a trip to Mexico City, comes through his words. Again, we’ll link the whole thing here.
— The Players' Tribune (@PlayersTribune) March 24, 2021