When the 49ers were considering trading for Chiefs edge rusher Dee Ford earlier this offseason, the team consulted an expert: Joe Staley.
The Pro Bowl left tackle of the 49ers went against Ford last season and gave up a sack to him. Staley gave the 49ers' leadership team a thumbs up on Ford.
This week, Staley told The Athletic’s Matt Barrows that he told the 49ers front office Ford has the quickest first step he’s ever seen.
"He’s one of the most explosive players I’ve played against, and he was definitely a challenge to go against last year and every time I’ve ever played him," Staley said.
Staley said he was sure Ford had jumped offside when Ford got his sack, but then saw on film later that Ford had just timed his rush perfectly.
"That first step, that quickness," said Staley.
Staley says that having Ford on the San Francisco defense will make both he and right tackle Mike McGlinchey better in 2019.
"I’m excited to go against him in practice," Staley said. "I mean, it’s going to be great for me and then also great for Mike."
The 49ers traded a second-round pick in 2020 to the Chiefs, then agreed to a new five-year deal with Ford that could be worth as much as $87.5 million.
The former first-round pick of Kansas City in 2014 had a career-high 13 sacks in 2018 and forced seven fumbles. He has 30½ career sacks.