With 11 draft picks in what is being called one of the deepest classes ever, the San Francisco 49ers have a chance to have one of their greatest draft classes of all time. It’ll be a tall task to challenge some of the great classes of yesteryear, but it’s an admirable goal at any rate.
With that in mind, let’s look at the competition. Here are the 10 greatest draft classes the franchise has ever managed to produce.
Several factors went into this ranking. Obviously, the major ranking factor was overall talent, but circumstances factor in as well—it’s easier to nail multiple starters and Pro Bowlers with multiple first-round picks than it is if you’re starting in the second or third round.
This is just a ranking of finding talent, not keeping it—if a player was drafted by the 49ers but left in free agency, that doesn’t make the actual draft any worse.
It’s interesting to note that the vast majority of these classes come from the dynasty years of the ‘80s and early ‘90s—it shows how powerful the draft can be when building a franchise.
We’re also crediting the head coach and the general manager/other key front office personnel for each draft. You may see a few names pop up over and over again.
With no further ado, here's the 10th-best class of all time: