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The 3 most unheralded players on the 49ers through 4 weeks

It wasn’t easy narrowing this down to 3...

Los Angeles Rams v San Francisco 49ers Photo by Michael Zagaris/San Francisco 49ers/Getty Images

We’re officially a quarter of the way through the NFL season. Ok, not exactly a quarter (thanks a lot, 17th game), but close enough.

The 49ers are 2-2 through four weeks. However, Monday night’s shellacking of the Los Angeles Rams has changed the team’s outlook in the eyes of many. Nick Bosa is on a historic pace, Deebo Samuel continues to make highlight-reel plays, and Fred Warner is playing at his elite level.

There are a few others players who continue to contribute but don’t get the same attention. Here are a few players who are underrated this season.

Charles Omenihu

Omenihu spoke in the off-season about how later in 2021, his familiarity with the defensive scheme grew. It showed down the stretch and during the 49ers’ playoff run, especially in Dallas.

Nick Bosa left the divisional matchup with an injury, and Omenihu filled in admirably, Totaling six pressures, two sacks, three hurries, and one QB hit. Omenihu’s performance was invaluable to the 49ers as they moved on to Lambeau.

Fast forward to 2022, Omenihu has picked up right where he left off. With 13 pressures, three hurries, one QB hit, and a sack, Omenihu has helped make up for the absences of Arik Armstead and Javon Kinlaw. Another example of this front office betting on a player’s physical traits and Kris Kocurek and DeMeco Ryans maximizing those traits.

Samson Ebukam

Speaking of players who caught fire late last season, there’s no better example than Samson Ebukam. He tallied four or more pressures in six of the final eight games, including the postseason. With a sack in each playoff game, Ebukam proved to be another find from the front office. In addition to his pass-rushing prowess, Ebukam proved to be stout in run defense while not missing a single tackle in 2021.

Forty-five pressures would be solid for any player. Through four weeks, Ebukam has totaled 14 pressures, three sacks, two QB hits, and nine hurries is very impressive. Seems as though Ebukam is just getting warmed up and is entrenched as the every-down starter opposite Bosa.

Emmanuel Moseley

Here’s Kyle Shanahan responding to a question regarding Moseley on Wednesday:

When did you have a sense CB Emmanuel Moseley was undrafted and pretty tiny and on practice squad, when did you have a sense like you that he could be who he is right now?

“Watching him on scout team that first year. Yeah, he was the same guy every day. Real similar to how he is now. Just a football player who thinks about it, who’s into it, who doesn’t hesitate. And those guys always get better if they can have luck with injuries, and when he has, he’s played at a pretty high level.”

Moseley’s journey from a UDFA to a player who will draw a large payday has been fascinating. The addition of Mooney Ward was the perfect compliment to Moseley, who was easily the 49ers’ best cover corner in 2021. Going up against the likes of DK Metcalf, Deandre Hopkins, Allen Robinson, and Cooper Kupp is a tall ask of any cornerback. Moseley has more than risen to the challenge.

The part of Moseley’s game that is overlooked is his tackling ability in the open field and the run game. Our own Kyle Posey broke it down here:

This past Monday night was another example of Moseley’s high level of play. Levin Black of the Gold Standard Podcast on Niners Nation found this gem:

Contract years are the time to prove your worth on the open market. Moseley is doing that and then some.

The amazing part about this team through four weeks is there are so many unheralded players. There’s no right or wrong way to judge. It just speaks to the depth and talent on this roster—a very fun time to be a 49ers fan.