The San Francisco 49ers have not had much luck retaining some of their top talent. Be it to retirement or leaving in free agency, this team’s roster has been gutted in recent seasons.
Fortunately for fans in Northern California, San Francisco was able to retain its most-prized free agent with just a few hours remaining until the market officially opens.
As NFL Media’s Ian Rapoport first reported, the team re-signed stud defensive tackle Ian Williams to a five-year contract:
DT Ian Williams has agreed to return to the #Niners on a 5-year deal, source said. Big move by SF before free agency begins
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) March 9, 2016
Williams, 26, is considered one of the top young interior defensive linemen in the entire NFL. He started all 16 games for the team last season, recording 65 tackles, a forced fumble and a sack.
Pro Football Focus graded Williams out as the fifth-best 3-4 defensive linemen against the run this past season.
For a team that is seemingly void of proven talent in the defensive front, this is a huge move.
Williams can be an anchor on a dominating run defense, something San Francisco hasn’t had since the height of Jim Harbaugh’s tenure earlier this decade.
The terms of the deal are not yet known, but it’s safe to say Williams got paid.