49ers deal for Washington OT Trent Williams to replace Joe Staley, who announces retirement


The NFC champions made a significant addition and didn’t have to give up much to do it.

The San Francisco 49ers won the Trent Williams sweepstakes. The Washington Redskins, who stubbornly sat on Williams, even after Williams made it clear he didn’t want to be with them anymore, traded Williams for the relatively cheap price of a 2020 fifth-round pick and a 2021 third-round pick.

It’s not too much to send for a seven-time Pro Bowl left tackle.

San Francisco coach Kyle Shanahan had coached Williams in Washington as a coordinator and the two are reunited. The 49ers’ offensive line gets a big boost, and it turns out it was needed.

Longtime 49ers left tackle Joe Staley announced his retirement on Saturday in an Instagram post:

Williams has not played since 2018. He was unhappy last year, and revealed that a cancerous growth on his head was misdiagnosed by the Redskins’ medical team. He held out, then went on injured reserve last season, never appearing in a game.

The 49ers and Minnesota Vikings were the two final suitors for Williams, according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport. The Browns were also interested but didn’t make an offer.

The Washington Redskins traded tackle Trent Williams (71) to the 49ers. (AP Photo/Ron Schwane)
The Washington Redskins traded tackle Trent Williams (71) to the 49ers. (AP Photo/Ron Schwane)

Washington had to move on, and teams knew that. By refusing to trade him all last year, it didn’t help its leverage. It was time to get what it could and put that story to rest.

For the 49ers, Williams will be 32 during the 2020 season but should have some good years left. Williams can help the 49ers’ stellar running game and Jimmy Garoppolo too.

Some team was going to land a borderline Hall of Fame lineman at a discount during the draft. The Vikings might regret not offering more.

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