Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports


Joe Staley explains his excitement surrounding the 49ers acquiring Trent Williams

Jun 23, 2020 at 7:56 PM--


The decision to retire was a difficult one for Joe Staley. The San Francisco 49ers longtime offensive tackle didn't want to leave his team in a bind. He played his entire 13-year career with the Niners, the team that made him the No. 28 overall pick in 2007.

Staley informed the 49ers of his decision during the week leading to the draft. That led general manager John Lynch to consider the team's options seriously.

One of those options was Washington's disgruntled offensive tackle, Trent Williams. Of course, the 49ers didn't want Washington to know about Staley's intentions.

"[Staley] allowed us to go into the draft with people not knowing [of his plan to retire]," 49ers CEO Jed York said this week during the team's virtual State of the Franchise event, "and that helped us go make a trade. And it just shows you what an ultimate teammate Joe is, in terms of doing what he has to do for himself, but putting the team first and putting the organization first and letting us try to not be at a disadvantage with him making his own personal announcement.

"He's going to always be a part of this team in one form or another, and that's always how he's approached it."

The 49ers pulled off the trade, sending a fifth-round pick in this past April's draft and a third-rounder in next year's to Washington in exchange for the veteran offensive lineman.

Staley believes the offensive line's left anchor spot is in good hands.

"Trent is someone I've watched my whole entire career as someone (who shows) how to do it at the highest level," Staley told team reporter Keiana Martin during the State of the Franchise event. "His athleticism is, I think, unparalleled in the NFL as far as left tackles. What he's able to do out in space, at the point of attack, he's really perfect for Kyle's scheme, offensively.

"Like Jed said before, it was really important to me to be able to keep the 49ers in a position where they weren't screwed over by my retirement and creating a big void there on the offensive line. Not only that, but just kind of a leadership (and) veteran presence. For the organization to kind of pivot from me to Trent Williams, I don't think you can do much better.

"He's one of the absolute best in the game at left tackle. Everybody that's played with him says he's an unbelievable person (and) teammate. He's a veteran guy that knows how to get things done. He's done it at a high level for a long time."





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