With knee back to normal, Bud Dupree says his confidence is “at a different level”

Titans edge rusher Bud Dupree said he didn’t return to feeling like himself until the final game of last season. That was a little over a year after tearing an ACL in a Dec. 2, 2020, game against the Bengals, which was his final game with the Steelers.

He expects to return to form in 2022.

“My confidence is at a different level,” Dupree said Tuesday, via Emma Healy of The Tennessean. “That’s what it takes to play the game — having confidence at a different level.”

Dupree played the first two games of 2021 and soon realized he returned too soon. He sat out the next three games, played four games and then played only one snap in the four games after that.

“Your mind is telling you one thing, but your body is telling you another,” Dupree said.

Dupree appeared in 11 games and made only 17 tackles and three sacks in his first season with the Titans. He had 19.5 sacks in his final 27 games with the Steelers before his knee injury.

He continues to work with his personal pass rush trainer, Chuck Smith, who is known as “Dr. Rush.”

“The focus this offseason has been getting my mobility back in my knee, getting my bend back in my stance,” Dupree said. “Things that were fundamental prior to the injury, but you’ve got to make sure you continue to do those things coming back to retrain the brain.”