A few years ago, Joe Staley was thinking his NFL career, or perhaps just his time with the 49ers, was coming to an end.
Now, however, the 49ers’ Pro Bowl left tackle has signed a two-year contract extension that will keep him with San Francisco through the 2021 season. At that point Staley will be 37.
The team announced the extension with Staley Wednesday at its annual State of the Franchise event in San Jose, and gave Staley a chance to speak to fans.
Eric Branch of the San Francisco Chronicle reported that an emotional Staley, on stage with CEO Jed York, told him, "Jed, since the moment you guys drafted me in 2007, it’s been my absolute honor to play for this franchise. And I want nothing more than to complete my entire career here."
Staley has been a durable and excellent player for the 49ers since his selection in the first round out of Central Michigan. He’s been selected to the Pro Bowl six times and since 2011 has missed just four games.
Staley has been re-energized the past two seasons since the hiring of head coach Kyle Shanahan and is excited by the direction he believes the team is headed. While the Niners have not yet had a winning season with Shanahan, Staley has said he believes the team will get back to being a serious contender.
"The culture in this building is really good," he said recently. "It’s probably the best I’ve had since I’ve been around. Guys are excited about playing football, excited about coming to work."
And now Staley knows he’ll be a part of it for the next three seasons.