Already, the 49ers lured in the Colts’ 2020 First Team All-Pro and prized special teams standout George Odum to bolster the safety spot in the Bay Area — signing him to a three-year, $10.95 million deal to add some enforcement and aggression to both the defense and specialists groups.
But now, as the 49ers host visitors at their facility, a former teammate of Odum’s got the chance to meet with the 49ers’ brass.
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Defender Delivered Career Best Season in Indy
Per ESPN NFL insider Field Yates on the afternoon of Wednesday, April 6, the 49ers hosted free agent defensive end Kemoko Turay.
The 6-foot-5, 248-pound edge rusher has played in 38 games with three starts according to Pro Football Reference, and went on to collect 12 career sacks for Indy.
However, the 2021 season represents his best outing in his four season career: 5.5 sacks with five tackles behind the line of scrimmage. And of the sacks he delivered, he posted two games of hitting two sacks in a single contest: The October 3, 2021 contest against the Miami Dolphins won by the Colts 27-17 and December 5, 2021 versus the Houston Texans in the 31-0 shutout win.
One of his other sacks from last season? Getting this one on Derek Carr of the Las Vegas Raiders while working against the more towering 6-foot-8, 320-pound right tackle Brandon Parker.
Turay Learned From Past Super Bowl Champ Plus a Beloved Ex-49ers Star
Turay got blessed with two prominent people around him during his Indy stay: One a past Super Bowl champ and another who helped take the 49ers to the Super Bowl before getting traded.
Though considered undersized for his trench position at below 250 pounds, Turay not only learned to use his get-off after the snap to gain the advantage against blockers, but he also had to learn how to be quicker with his hands especially in chopping away at the appendages from offensive linemen.
One way he learned: By going through this rapid fire hands drill with five-time Pro Bowler, Super Bowl 41 winner and revered Colts pass rusher Robert Mathis.
That kind of hand reaction assisted him in his double sack performance against the AFC South rival Texans.
Mathis was in his corner the moment he became a Colt, saying “I see something in you” to Turay as the free agent edge rusher recalled during this March 2020 interview with the “For the Culture” podcast with Reggie Wayne.
Playing on a defensive line with DeForest Buckner also helped Turay when on the field with the former 49ers trench standout. Turay was able to funnel plays to Buckner off of his edge speed.
Both Turay and Buckner then would become locker room voices together on the Colts, which included sparking a players only meeting during their slow start.
Turay’s Contract & Value
The former Rutgers Scarlet Knight Turay was once signed to a four-year, $5,218,401 deal. Per spotrac, Turay held a base salary of $1,191,600 during the 2021 season.
He’ll likely not command a high salary wherever he ends up. And should the 49ers consider adding Turay, it not only puts him and Odum back together again, but Turay could give the 49ers a towering, cat-quick pass rusher that Arden Key was for S.F. in 2021.