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Defensive Line Dynamics: 49ers Trade Up for Tackle Talent

Mar 14, 2024 #49ers, #maliek Collins

The San Francisco 49ers have bolstered their defensive line by acquiring defensive tackle Maliek Collins from the Houston Texans in exchange for a seventh-round draft pick.

The acquisition of Collins by the Niners was confirmed by a source familiar with the trade, speaking on condition of anonymity to The Associated Press. ESPN first reported the transaction.

Collins joins the 49ers as the latest addition to their revamped defensive line, following previous agreements with free agent defensive ends Leonard Floyd and Yetur Gross-Matos, and defensive tackle Jordan Elliott, sources revealed anonymously as those deals had yet to be finalized.

With several key players hitting free agency and one released in a cost-cutting move, the 49ers sought reinforcements on their defensive line, making Collins a valuable addition.

Collins, who will turn 29 next month, brings with him a track record of solid performance, including a career-high five sacks last season and impressive metrics in pass rush win rate.

Having spent his first four seasons in Dallas and the 2020 season with the Raiders before joining the Texans, Collins’ experience adds depth to the 49ers’ defensive front.

The departure of Arik Armstead, the longest-tenured 49ers player, who was released in a cost-cutting move, created additional space for new acquisitions.

Despite Armstead’s departure, the 49ers made efforts to secure veteran linebacker Eric Kendricks, who ultimately chose to sign with the Dallas Cowboys instead.

In light of linebacker Dre Greenlaw’s injury and the departure of other linebackers in free agency, the Niners continue to seek additional help at the position.

Additionally, the team restructured the contract of All-Pro fullback Kyle Juszczyk, ensuring his presence for another season, while also creating salary cap flexibility. Juszczyk, a perennial Pro Bowler, remains a crucial component of coach Kyle Shanahan’s offensive schemes.

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