‘Impossibly Long’ 49ers DL Predicted For a ‘Hefty Extension’ in 2023

Dak Prescott

Getty Dak Prescott gets chased by defenders from the 49ers during their January 16, 2022 playoff game.

There’s one more member of the San Francisco 49ers in line to have a new deal.

But that’s only if this “impossibly long” defender delivers a breakout season along a deep and loaded defensive line unit — the kind of season that awards this edge defender a “hefty extension” as CBS Sports NFL analyst Chris Trapasso predicted in his column from Friday, June 10.

Trapasso picked five non-quarterbacks as his choice of “NFL players in contract year primed for breakout season.” Who was his choice from the 49ers?

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Defender Acquired From Trade is Breakout Choice for ‘Hefty Extension’

Charles Omenihu is the NFL analyst’s pick to breakout in his contract year.

The 6-foot-5, 280-pounder was one of the late additions to the 49ers before the NFL trade deadline; adding more length and pass-rushing to a unit that thrives off both. Now, the former Houston Texans defensive end is facing a critical season if he wants to secure a longer term deal for 2023.

Per Over the Cap, Omenihu is set to make $2,540,000 for his base salary. The 25-year-old was originally signed to a four-year contract in 2019 with the Texans before being traded. Before his arrival to the Bay Area, Omenihu got off to a strong start in 2021 with the Texans.

“The impossibly long Omenihu started Year 3 strong with 16 pressures in his 105 pass-rushing snaps in Houston. That productivity perked the ears of 49ers GM John Lynch, who traded for Omenihu before the trade deadline,” Trapasso wrote.

However, the moment he arrived to the Bay, he ended up walking into a congested defensive lineman room, helping hinder his snap counts.

“What’s weird was that after being on the field for close to 40 snaps per game with the Texans, the 49ers newly acquired, unique pass rusher never played more than 20 snaps in a single contest for the rest of the regular season,” Trapasso stated.

But along came his homecoming in the state of Texas for the Ex-Texan and former Texas Longhorns defender.

“That changed in the first playoff win, when he erupted for six pressures on 27 pass-rush opportunities across 35 total snaps against the Cowboys,” Trapasso said. “Sure, it was just one contest, a rather big one at that, but Omenihu made a statement to his new coaching staff — he should’ve been playing more from the jump in his new locale.”


How Can Omenihu Shine in Crowded DL Group?

The 49ers nearly carried 20 defensive linemen during OTAs and minicamp. And during the draft, bolstered the unit even more with the drafting of Drake Jackson at No. 61 overall then Kalia Davis at the 220th slot.

The team will also have free agent newcomers Hassan Ridgeway and Kemoko Turay via the Philadelphia Eagles and Indianapolis Colts, respectively, once training camp begins in late July. Will also add, former first rounder Javon Kinlaw is on his way back from his ACL tear.

Even with his length, power and pass-rushing past, is Omenihu already looking like the odd man out? Trapasso doesn’t believe so.

“The former Texas star has gotten more comfortable and productive rushing the passer in each of his first three seasons in the NFL. And in what should be a more prominent role on the 49ers defensive line, I expect a noticeable breakout en route to a hefty extension in the 2023 offseason for the nearly 6-6 defender with 36-inch tentacles attached to his torso,” Trapasso wrote.

Omenihu himself is praying for his breakout 2022 through this one-emoji tweet.

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