With their first selection on Day 3 of the NFL draft, the Houston Texans selected a man just up the road on Highway 290 in Charles Omenihu (oh-MEN-uh-hoo) out of Texas. Out of high school, Omenihu was a consensus top 50 player overall and top 15 defense end out of Rowlett High School.
He was a part of the vaunted defensive recruiting classes that Charlie Strong brought in to Austin during his early years there. Omenihu has tremendous size and is one of the biggest and longest prospects in the draft this year. He stands at 6’5″ and weighs in at 280 lbs to go with his insane 36″ arms.
However, he’s not just size and length. He is also a tremendous athlete. He ran the 40 yard dash in 4.92 seconds, vertical jumped 36.5″, broad jumped 115″, and ran his short shuttle in 4.36 seconds. He parlayed all of these traits into a team-leading 18 tackles for loss and 9.5 sacks in 2018.
He has lacked consistency in his career at Texas after coming in as a top recruit. Some have knocked his football instincts and work ethic but if that’s the case, he couldn’t have landed in a better situation with J.J. Watt and Whitney Mercilus setting the cultural tone.
Impact: Instant starter opposite of JJ Watt
Okay, depending on how the Houston Texans lineup and who lines up where could technically ruin this impact, specifically looking at how Romeo Crennel will use Jadeveon Clowney on a weekly basis. Regardless, Omenihu represents an upgrade for the Texans even as a fifth round pick.
The Texans lost Christian Covington in free agency and retained three guys who rotated through at defensive end in Angelo Blackson, Brandon Dunn, and Joel Heath. Omenihu is more athletic and a better football player than all four of those guys and needs to see playing time immediately.
He’ll receive endless one-on-one’s due to the attention Watt, Clowney, Mercilus, and others will command. He definitely has things he needs to work on to become a great player but the Texans got a really good one with great upside due to his size and athleticism. Omenihu is a name you’ll need to remember from Day 3.