No. 3: 49ers Offensive Tackle Trent Williams
Enough with the offensive linemen already…
But it does illustrate a point: O-lines take time to jell, and it’s one of the reasons why an almost completely healthy Niners O-line in 2018 suffered a bit of a drop off last year, particularly with regards to staying healthy.
Joe Staley’s retirement shook things up during the offseason, yet it was quite the consolation prize the 49ers were able to execute a trade for the 31-year-old seven-time Pro Bowler, Trent Williams, in the middle of the draft.
Williams is an upgrade over Staley, both in terms of accolades and youth, and that’s not easy to do considering the latter’s resume.
Yet a few caveats to consider here. First, while Williams also has experience playing in Kyle Shanahan’s system from their days together in Washington, it’s important to note Williams sat out all of 2019 in hopes of a new contract with the Redskins, which never materialized.
Yes, the year off could actually do Williams some good, and it’s not as if he simply lost his abilities in the year away.
But getting those “football legs” back will take time, as well as jelling with his new linemate, Laken Tomlinson, who’ll look to create the needed chemistry to protect quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo‘s blindside.