Calais Campbell, other players who could follow Ryan Nielsen to Jacksonville Jaguars

• The Jaguars have oficially hired Ryan Nielsen as their DC. These 3 Falcons pending free agents could join Nielsen in Jacksonville
Sep 10, 2023; Atlanta, Georgia, USA; Atlanta Falcons defensive tackle Calais Campbell (93)
Sep 10, 2023; Atlanta, Georgia, USA; Atlanta Falcons defensive tackle Calais Campbell (93) / Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports
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1. Bud Dupree, edge rusher

Calais Campbell isn't the only pass rusher who could follow Ryan Nielsen to the Jaguars. There's also Bud Dupree, who spent a season in Atlanta after a two-year stint with the Tennessee Titans. A first-round pick in 2015, Dupree began his playing career with the Pittsburgh Steelers.

After posting a combined 19.5 sacks in his last two seasons in Pittsburgh, he signed a five-year deal worth $85 million with Tennesse in 2021. Former NFL general manager Mike Tannenbaum thought at the time that Dupree was one of the best players available in free agency that year. However, he suffered an ACL injury in 2021 that limited his impact and he wasn't particularly productive the following year, registering just three sacks. Thus, he inked a modest $3 million contract with the Falcons last offseason.

More than a year removed from the ACL injury and under Nielsen's tutelage, Dupree had a bounce-back season in 2023. Besides suiting up for 16 games, the most he had since 2019, he registered 6.5 sacks and a healthy 38 total pressures. It's fair to assume that he could keep trending up if he continues to play for Nielsen.

Given the Jaguars' need for a No. 3 pass rusher behind Travon Walker and Josh Allen, signing Dupree would make sense. While he's in a position to ask for a better contract than the one he got last year, the Jaguars wouldn't probably have to break the bank to sign him. Something around the $5 million-$7 million mark might do the trick, and it would ensure Nielsen has a familiar face to run his scheme in Jacksonville.

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