49ers vs. Texans: Charles Omenihu can enact vengeance vs. former team

Charles Omenihu #92 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)
Charles Omenihu #92 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images) /

When the 49ers host the Texans in Week 17, Charles Omenihu will likely be looking for some payback against the team that traded him away earlier this year.

It’s inevitable across the NFL to see players face off against their former teams. Case in point, it was big news when quarterback Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers squared off against the New England Patriots earlier this season.

The San Francisco 49ers‘ Week 17 home game against the lowly Houston Texans won’t get anywhere near that kind of publicity, but it does feature a bit of a reunion.

For Niners defensive end Charles Omenihu.

Omenihu, whom San Francisco acquired for a 2023 sixth-round NFL Draft pick just before this year’s NFL trade deadline, spent two-plus years with the Texans after being selected in Round 5 back in 2019 out of Texas. During his Houston tenure, the 6-foot-5, 280-pound lineman recorded 30 tackles, eight of which were for a loss, along with seven sacks and 24 quarterback hits.

By all accounts, Omenihu was a popular figure among Houston’s fanbase, so it’ll be interesting to see how Texans fans react to him trying to get after rookie quarterback Davis Mills on Sunday.

49ers haven’t used Charles Omenihu a lot this season

Few are going to complain about using a sixth-round pick to beef up a unit that was, at least at the time, dealing with some injury attrition and depth concerns. The 49ers were, and still are to a point, lacking in the pass-rush department behind Pro Bowl EDGE Nick Bosa, and the hope was Omenihu could provide some much-needed support to help take a full load of Bosa.

To date, though, Omenihu has played just 102 defensive snaps (25 percent when available) for the Niners after the trade, all over the course of seven games.

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Part of the reason, perhaps, is San Francisco has watched reserve defensive end Arden Key come on as of late, currently ranking second behind Bosa with five sacks.

However, if there was ever a game for the 49ers to let Omenihu loose so he can get some retribution against his former squad that traded him away, it would be this weekend.

The Niners and Texans kick off their Week 17 matchup on Sunday, Jan. 2 at 4:05 p.m. ET.

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