Early in the 2013 season, Seahawks guard J.R. Sweezy blocked 49ers nose tackle Ian Williams at knee level, then rolled into Williams’ legs.
Williams went down hard and suffered a broken left ankle. He was lost for the season.
Now, less than three years later, it’s possible Sweezy and Williams will be teammates.
With the opening of the free-agency signing period Wednesday, the Niners are seeking help at guard, and Sweezy – an unrestricted free agent – is reported to be high on their wish list.
Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee reported that several franchises are interested in Sweezy and that “the 49ers are among the teams in the mix.”
Sweezy, a starter at right guard for Seattle, is a 6-foot-5, 296-pounder who was a seventh-round pick out of North Carolina State in 2012.
He isn’t considered to be at the top of the list of guards in free agency, but is a veteran NFC West player with a physical reputation on an offensive line that has been a solid run-blocking unit.
Barrows wrote that the 49ers likely have a number of guards targeted in what is sure to be a brisk free-agent signing period. Already, Kelechi Osemele, the top lineman available, has reportedly reached a deal to sign with the Oakland Raiders.
“(The 49ers) are expected to keep tabs on all of the top guards in the market, perhaps bailing to the next one on their list – and so on and so forth – if the price grows too steep,” Barrows wrote.
Other top free-agent guards (in order of rank by Pro Football Focus) are Richie Incognito (Bills), Evan Mathis (Broncos), Jeff Allen (Chiefs) and Ramon Foster (Steelers).
Mathis, however, may not be a good fit. The former Eagles lineman who played for new 49ers head coach Chip Kelly in Philadelphia, recently voiced his displeasure with Kelly as a coach.