SANTA CLARA -- The 49ers released nose tackle Ian Williams with an injury settlement on Thursday. Williams, who suffered an ankle injury early in the offseason, had been on the non-football injury list.
The maneuver doesn't preclude the 49ers from re-signing him at a later date -- most likely after the season -- and doesn't signal a setback in his recovery. Instead, the settlement allows Williams to earn a little more this year than he would had he remained on the NFI.
Williams has dealt with an array of ankle injuries and surgeries over the last few year but graded out well last year. His absence has left the 49ers without a true nose tackle, one of the reasons why the defense has performed so poorly, especially against the run, this season.