49ers veteran Joe Staley retires after 13 seasons

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One of the most beloved San Francisco 49ers in recent memory is walking away from the NFL. Longtime Niners left tackle Joe Staley announced his retirement Saturday, noting injury concerns during San Francisco's Super Bowl run last season.

"Last season was a dream to be a part of, having the opportunity to chase a Championship. But, it was by far the most difficult on me and my family," Staley wrote in his retirement letter. "My body was breaking down with a variety of injuries and a deteriorating neck condition, and the constant discomfort affected every aspect of my life."

Staley, 35, dealt with a broken fibula, broken finger and hand injury last season and has struggled with a neck condition after the season. After mulling retirement for most of the offseason, Staley came to a decision earlier this week, informing Niners coach Kyle Shanahan of his decision in an effort to allow the 49ers to replace nike nfl jerseys china

On Saturday, the Niners traded a 2020 fifth-round draft choice and a 2021 third-round choice to the Washington Redskins for left tackle Trent Williams. Williams, 31, will step in for Staley at left tackle with deep knowledge of coach Kyle Shanahan's offense. Shanahan served as offensive coordinator in Washington when Williams was selected No. 4 overall in the 2010 NFL draft.

Welcoming Williams into the fold figures to be much easier than saying goodbye to Staley.6

After Saturday's draft was complete, Niners general manager John Lynch and coach Kyle Shanahan began their final media availability of the weekend by paying their tribute to Staley. Shanahan even went so far as to put up a photo of Staley as his background during the video conference call.

"I was with Joe three years," Shanahan said. "He's as good of a player and warrior and person as any player I have ever been around. I love the guy. It was really hard on us when we had to realize that he wasn't going to play this nike nfl jerseys cheap

"But talking to the man, knowing the person, knowing his family, he is no doubt making the right decision of what's best for his health and the future. It was really hard for us to hear with how good of a player he was and still is. It's the best thing for him, and I'm really happy for him and happy for the career that he had."

It's a career that made Staley a fan favorite in San Francisco. The team used the 28th pick on him in the 2007 NFL draft, and Staley made six Pro Bowls, earned three second-team All Pro nods and was on the NFL's 2010s All-Decade team. He started all 181 regular-season games in which he appeared over his career.

On Saturday, Lynch and Shanahan called Staley a vital part of their rebuilding efforts after taking over in 2017. Their arrival also coincided with Staley's football resurgence. After a few years of losing under the likes of Jim Tomsula and Chip Kelly, Staley nearly retired then but has often spoken of how Shanahan's arrival gave him real hope that it would all turn around.

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