For as highly regarded as he is now, there was a time when Steve Young was often criticized for not being able to get the team to the big game.
In 1994, not only did Young get them there, he was instrumental in bringing the team’s record fifth Lombardi Trophy home to the bay.
The season started auspiciously enough, the Los Angeles Raiders came to town for the season opener and left with their tails between their legs after getting clobbered 44-14.
Then the much-anticipated match-up would take place in week two. Young’s 49ers would square off against former teammate Joe Montana and the Kansas City Chiefs.
Although the 49ers out-gained the Chiefs in total yards, the Chiefs defense came up big with four turnovers, and four sacks. The late Derrick Thomas had three of those sacks and tackled Young in the end zone for a safety just before the end of the half.
Final score: Chiefs 24 49ers 17.
After a humbling loss to the Philadelphia Eagles (8-40) in week five, the team started to roll.
With the two headed rushing attack of Ricky “Running” Watters and William “Bar None” Floyd, and the receiving trio of Jerry Rice, John Taylor, and Brent Jones the team cruised through the rest of the regular season.
The defense wasn’t too bad either.
The secondary featured Deion Sanders, Eric Davis, Merton Hanks, and Tim McDonald.
Those four accounted for 17 of the teams 23 interceptions.
Ken Norton Jr., Gary Plummer, and Lee Woodall were terrific against the run.
Veteran Rickey Jackson, second year man Dana Stubblefield and Rookie sensation Bryant Young supplied the pressure.
The often overlooked, and much under appreciated, offensive line consisted of tackles Steve Wallace and Harris Barton, guards Jesse Sapolu and Derrick Deese, and center Bart Oats.
They crushed opponents by huge margins—the Atlanta Falcons (42-3), the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 41-6, and the Denver Broncos 42-19.
The Vikings did beat them in the final showdown of the regular season however, it was a meaningless contest as the 49ers had home field advantage locked up throughout the playoffs.
In the first playoff game, the team had no trouble dispatching the Chicago Bears 44-15.
In the conference championship game against the Dallas Cowboys, an Eric Davis 44 yard “pick six”, A 29 yard touchdown reception by Watters, and a one yard touchdown plunge by Floyd, resulted in a 21-0 lead in the first quarter.
The Cowboys would battle back, and their fans are still screaming for a pass interference call on Deion Sanders against Michael Irvin, but in the end the 49ers prevailed 38-28.
The Super Bowl was almost anticlimactic. Stan Humphries San Diego Chargers never had a chance going down to defeat by a score of 49-26.
But the game will always be remembered for Young running to the sidelines and yelling to his teammates to, “Get that monkey off my back”!