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Steelers place franchise tag on LB Bud Dupree

Another pass-rusher is off the market.

The Pittsburgh Steelers announced Monday they have placed the franchise tag on linebacker Bud Dupree.

The 27-year-old is coming off his best pro season, compiling career-highs in tackles (68), sacks (11.5) and passes defended (3).

The Steelers, who are at the bottom of the NFL in terms of cap space, prioritized keeping their former first-round pass rusher for at least one more season.

"He is a priority for us," coach Mike Tomlin said at his season-ending press conference. "Make no mistake, Bud Dupree is a priority for us."

That priority ended with the franchise tender, which is expected to be around $16 million, per Over The Cap.

Keeping Dupree on the opposite side of star edge rusher T.J. Watt ensures the Steelers dynamic duo will have at least one more season to wreak havoc in backfields.

The Steelers and Dupree have until July 15 to work on a long-term contract.

The decision to tag Dupree is likely to have a domino effect on the rest of the Steelers' roster, with Pittsburgh needing to clear cap space to fit the tag figure.

In other Steelers roster news Monday, the team terminated the contracts of linebackers Mark Barron and Anthony Chickillo and wide receiver Johnny Holton.

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