49ers OT Trent Williams enters career-defining season in 2020

Trent Williams #71 of the Washington Redskins (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)
Trent Williams #71 of the Washington Redskins (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images) /
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Trent Williams, Washington Redskins
Trent Williams #71 of the Washington Redskins (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images) /

Why Trent Williams regresses with 49ers in 2020

Expectations are already awfully high on Trent Williams entering this season, partially due to his notable accolades and the fact he’s being asked to replace one of the Niners’ all-time greats, Joe Staley.

While it’s just as fair to cite Williams taking 2019 off away from football, it’s equally important to suggest it could cause some sort of drawback entering this season. Granted, Williams doesn’t have much to learn with regards to Kyle Shanahan’s offense. But there will be some slight adjustments and a relearning period, of sorts.

The lack of spring workouts and an altered training camp could also factor into Williams’ adjustment, too.

But the bigger concern could be Williams’ injury history. True, it hasn’t been as bad as other perennially banged-up linemen. He’s had knee issues and also dealt with a cancerous growth on his head back in 2019. That in of itself might not be a concern. But with the current pandemic being a factor, Williams could eventually be viewed as a high-risk player. He elected not to opt out of the upcoming season, though.

For the most part, however, Williams’ track record of injuries is there but isn’t necessarily substantial. Perhaps the only other reason why Williams would regress is due to the needed time many linemen require to acclimate to their fellow teammates, and the veteran not getting ample time to do this because of zero on-field spring workouts could work against him here.