49ers roster 2023: Taybor Pepper is the hero the Niners need (but don't deserve)

Few articles focus on long-snappers, but this one does.
San Francisco 49ers long snapper Taybor Pepper (46)
San Francisco 49ers long snapper Taybor Pepper (46) / Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports

The 49ers were smart in bringing Taybor Pepper back this offseason.

Long-snappers typically have one job, and it's best if fans don't even notice they're on the field.

Because if fans do notice, it usually means the long-snapper is having some sort of issue.

This wasn't unlike what former San Francisco 49ers long-snapper Kyle Nelson went through back in 2020 against the New York Giants, and his off-target snaps in succession ultimately led to his dismissal from the team the following week.

The Niners' eventual replacement? The one and only, Taybor Pepper.

OK, so we can sing Pepper's praises. He engages with fans on social media, has a pretty good sense of humor and has even taken rookie kicker Jake Moody under his wing.

All that will matter, though, is if Pepper continues to do his job well and without being noticed.

At least on the field. Being noticed off of it is just fine.

How much are the 49ers now paying Taybor Pepper?

Remember that re-sign deal the Niners did with Pepper earlier this offseason, the one he rather hilariously announced on his social media feed?

Well, it was a three-year deal worth up to $3.96 million, according to Over the Cap, with $1.5 million fully guaranteed.

That's a lot of money for a long-snapper, yes. and it puts him in the top 10 of annual average value for long-snapper contracts.

Again, if his on-field efforts go unnoticed, it's money well-spent.

What should we expect from Taybor Pepper, 49ers this season (what's a long-snapper)?

If you're a football novice (it's OK, we all have to start somewhere), you might not be familiar with Pepper's job.

Long-snappers are like centers on offense who snap the ball to start a play, except the former position does so on special teams so that punters and kickers can boot the ball with their foot.

Unlike centers, who can essentially hand the ball to a quarterback under center, long-snappers have to snap the ball... a long distance.

That's Pepper's job.

He doesn't have any competition on the team's roster right now, and most NFL squads wouldn't waste time carrying a second long-snapper anyway. It's a thankless position but one that can create all kinds of issues if done poorly, as Nelson and San Francisco found out way back in the early portion of the 2020 season.

Pepper won't be letting the 49ers down in that regard, at least not for the next three years.

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