The San Francisco 49ers and new left tackle Trent Williams both appear to be comfortable in letting their new relationship play out for a while before committing to a future beyond the 2020 season.
Williams hasn’t played in a football game since the 2018 season after sitting out last year in a dispute with Washington over medical diagnoses and treatment.
While there is uncertainty about a long-term future with Williams, 49ers General Manager John Lynch said he’s happy to let the process play out.
“I think the plan was to land him right now and then let the rest kind of work itself out,” Lynch said, via Nick Wagoner of ESPN.com. “I think it’s always an advantage when you get someone in the building, on your roster. Now you’ve got a chance. We’ll get a really good look at him. We’ll see where the rest of our team is at, but right now we are just ecstatic that we were able to pull it off at a really opportune time.”
The retirement of Joe Staley made the 49ers need for a tackle that much more urgent. The 49ers let Tampa Bay trade up to take Tristan Wirfs at No. 13 overall as the top four tackles in the draft class all came off the board in the top 13. But even without a deal yet in place for Williams, the 49ers passed on tacking any offensive lineman through the first two days of the draft. Then after getting Williams from Washington for a fifth-round pick and a 2021 third-round selection, the 49ers also grabbed West Virginia tackle Colton McKivitz in the fifth round.
“You’re losing a great player like Joe at a very critical position, to be able to have everything line up that he was available right then and for us to be able to land him, I think very fortuitous for us, and we’re very excited about that,” Lynch said.
If Williams is able to jump back in with the Pro Bowl form he had been playing with the last time he was on an NFL field, getting a contract in place will be a problem Lynch will be happy to have on his plate.