San Francisco's three-time Pro Bowl left tackle has sage advice for the high school seniors declaring their college of choice on National Signing Day.
"Congrats to all the recruits signing letters of intent today," Staley wrote as a caption on a throwback Instagram photo. "Remember stars mean nothing. Work does.#2stars #highandtight."
Staley's journey to the 49ers was documented in depth last offseason. The offensive lineman was a college tight end at Central Michigan, but Staley eventually was convinced that his future in the NFL would be at tackle.
Rockford doesn’t churn out Division I football prospects like other areas of Michigan. It did, however, produce Staley, the first, first-round draft pick in Central Michigan football history. Staley wasn’t destined to be a first-rounder when he accepted a scholarship to play tight end for the Chippewas. Truth be told, he just wanted to play football for as long as possible following a football and track career at Rockford High School. The NFL was hardly in Staley’s mind back in 2003 when he appeared in 11 games as a true freshman, catching 11 passes for 130 yards and one touchdown.
“It was never a goal,” Staley says sitting upright at 49ers headquarters in Santa Clara. “It wasn’t like I came to school saying, ‘My goal is to become an NFL player.’”
Staley went on to become an elite offensive lineman in the league. His advice should be taken seriously.
The 49ers left tackle wasn't the only member of the roster to react to Signing Day news on their social media accounts. SEC standouts, too, shared their reactions to the day's events.
Congrats to all the new tigers signing that letter today! One of the best decision I've ever made. #LSU— Glenn Dorsey (@GlennDorsey72) February 5, 2014
Congrats to all the young men that are making a huge decision for you and your family that will impact the rest if your life!#SigningDay— Quinton Dial (@BigQD90) February 5, 2014