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2019 New Orleans Saints draft prospects: Charles Omenihu

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The versatile defensive lineman could add quality depth to an already strong unit.

NCAA Football: Oklahoma at Texas Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

An intriguing prospect out of the University of Texas, Charles Omenihu is a bit of a hybrid defensive lineman. Omenihu split time in college between the edge as a 5-technique (outside shoulder of tackle) and interior of the line as a 4i or 3 technique (inside shoulder of tackle or outside shoulder of guard), but projects to be more of an interior player in the NFL.

College stats:

Defense & Fumbles Table
Tack Tack Tack Fumb
School Conf Class G Tot Loss Sk FF
Texas Big 12 FR 9 17 1.0 0.0 1
Texas Big 12 SO 12 26 4.0 3.0 0
Texas Big 12 JR 13 27 7.0 4.0 2
Texas Big 12 SR 14 45 18.0 9.5 1
Texas 115 30.0 16.5 4
Provided by CFB at Sports Reference: View Original Table
Generated 4/9/2019.

Combine measurements and test results:

  • 6’5” 280 lbs.
  • 40: 4.92
  • Vert: 36.5
  • Broad: 115
  • 3-cone: 7.48
  • 20 yard shuttle: 4.36

While he doesn’t have typical size for an defensive tackle, he has the frame to add bulk once he gets to the next level. He also is in the 99th percentile when it comes to wingspan and arm length, which shows up on his tape.

Another trait that shows up on tape is his first step. He can explode off the line and use his arm length to punch offensive lineman before they can get set. However, this can be inconsistent as he will occasionally false step if he can’t time the snap properly.

Hand usage is another positive trait where he shows excellent arm extension as well an ability to disengage blockers.

Omenihu displayed enough pass rush moves to be effective when lined up on the edge in college. His main moves are the bull rush, swat, and rip; all of which bodes well for rushing the passer at the next level.

#90, lined up on edge, near side

He may lack the necessary flexibility and bend to consistently line up on the edge, and his weight could cause him to have issues against the stouter offensive lineman he’ll face in the NFL, but its his versatility that makes him so intriguing. The Saints recently added Mario Edwards Jr., who is a similar player with the ability to line up on the edge or interior, though most of his snaps come from the interior.

Sheldon Rankins will most likely be out until November as he recovers from his Achilles injury, and David Onyemata will possibly face a suspension for a marijuana citation during the offseason. On top of that, it is a contract year for Onyemata, and if the team decides to move on from him, Omenihu could fill his role as a backup three-technique that can also get after the passer.