Seven-time Pro Bowl selection Trent Williams had a lengthy feud with his former team in Washington for how they handled treatment of what ended up being a cancerous growth on Williams' head. He refused to report to the team in training camp and demanded a trade in March before eventually finding his way to the 49ers in a deal made on the final day of the 2020 NFL Draft.
Williams now says the 49ers always were high on his list of potential trade destinations, as he was made aware during the season that longtime Niners left tackle Joe Staley might be hanging up his cleats after the 2019 season.
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"I knew there was a possibility, but it was just kinda on the back burner until that situation kind of played out," Williams told NFL Media's Ian Rapoport. "I kinda just kept close tabs on it, because obviously that was my No. 1 destination.
"That's where I wanted to be, so once it started to play out and the rumblings started to grow that he might not return, that's when all the focus started to shift back to the 49ers."
Staley announced his retirement on Day 3 of the draft, with the Niners acquiring Williams for a pair of draft picks from Washington just hours later.
Williams easily can slide in and take Staley's spot at left tackle, with young right tackle Mike McGlinchey now entering his third season in the NFL on the other side.
Quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo likely had some concern about losing Staley's leadership and expertise at the tackle spot, but the Niners might have gotten him an even better left tackle if Williams can return to his previous form.
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Trent Williams explains why 49ers were his ideal trade destination originally appeared on NBC Sports Bay Area