San Francisco 49ers: The Top 50 Greatest 49ers of All Time

Mihir Bhagat@mihirbhagatSenior Analyst IIINovember 16, 2010

San Francisco 49ers: The Top 50 Greatest 49ers of All Time

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    23 Sep 1990:  San Francisco 49ers wide receiver Jerry Rice (left) and quarterback Joe Montana look on during a game against the Atlanta Falcons at Candlestick Park in San Francisco, California.  The 49ers won the game, 19-13. Mandatory Credit: Otto Greule
    Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images

    The San Francisco 49ers are one of the most decorated franchises in NFL history. They hold traditions, have won five Super Bowls and have, all in all, revolutionized the game of football.

    One of the most important aspect of the organization's success has been its long list of talented players, including their 17 Pro Football Hall of Fame inductees.

    Whether they be from the team's early days, ones from their championship years or those from the present, the 49ers have produced numerous skilled players throughout their existence.

    Therefore, in honor of the team's greats, I've decided to compile a ranking of the Top 50 49ers of all time. 

50. Andy Lee (2004-Present)

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    Andy Lee P #6
    Andy Lee P #6Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images

    Andy Lee, a two-time Pro Bowler, is the greatest punter in San Francisco 49ers history and is arguably the best in the league today.

    He has an impressive career net average of 45.1 yards per punt, and frequently pins the opposition inside their own 20-yard-line.

    While being a punter may not be a glamor job, it's certainly important because it plays a huge factor in field position.

    The 49ers are fortunate to have somebody as gifted as Lee. 

49. Abe Woodson (1958-1964)

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    Abe Woodson was best known for his dual threat ability as both a defensive back and a return specialist.

    He scored a total of seven touchdowns in his career returning kicks, twice on punts and five on kickoffs.

    Defensively, he picked off 15 passes and forced 14 fumbles in his seven years with the 49ers. 

48. Ray Wersching (1977-1987)

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    Ray Wersching was an undrafted free agent who made a name for himself as a clutch kicker.

    In fact, in Super Bowl XVI, he set a Super Bowl record by nailing four field goals in the 49ers win.

    By the time he retired, Wesching held the record for most points in team history.

    An interesting fact to know is that he always looked down until after he had kicked a field goal or extra point. 

47. Eric Davis (1990-1995)

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    15 Jan 1995:  Wide receiver Michael Irvin of the Dallas Cowboys gets tackled by San Francisco 49ers defensive back Eric Davis during a playoff game at Candlestick Park in San Francisco, California.  The 49ers won the game, 38-28. Mandatory Credit: Otto Gr
    Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images

    Eric Davis played at his best after he left the San Francisco 49ers, but he still made a mark on the team.

    Davis was an integral key to the team's victory over the Dallas Cowboys in the 1994 NFC Championship Game, which eventually led to a win in Super Bowl XXIX.

46. Deion Sanders (1994)

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    29 Jan 1995:  Defensive back Deion Sanders of the San Francisco 49ers celebrates during Super Bowl XXIX against the San Diego Chargers at Joe Robbie Stadium in Miami, Florida.  The 49ers won the game, 49-26. Mandatory Credit: Doug Pensinger  /Allsport
    Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

    Deion Sanders may be the best cornerback in NFL history, but since he only played a single season for the San Francisco 49ers, I chose to put him here on my ranking.

    Nonetheless, that was probably the best season of his career, as he intercepted six passes and returned them for a total of 303 yards (NFL record), three of which were returned for scores. 

    He was named the Defensive Player of the Year, and capped off a memorable season by recording a pick in the team's Super Bowl XXIX victory. 

45. Ricky Watters (1991-1994)

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    MIAMI - JANUARY 29:  Running back Ricky Watters #32 of the San Francisco 49ers runs for a touchdown during Super Bowl XXIX against the San Diego Chargers at Joe Robbie Stadium on January 29, 1995 in Miami, Florida. The 49ers won 49-26. (Photo by George Ro
    George Rose/Getty Images

    Ricky Watters led the San Francisco 49ers in offense from 1992 to 1994 and was a primary reason why they went to the NFC Championship Game in '92 and '93. In fact, he set an NFL postseason record, as he scored five touchdowns in a 44-3 rout of the New York Giants in a '93 divisional playoff game. 

    Later, he would provide an even bigger contribution, as he scored three touchdowns in the team's victory in Super Bowl XXIX. 

    Unfortunately, Watters would leave via free agency subsequently. 

44. Jack Reynolds (1981-1984)

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    Jack Reynolds was a fullback-turned-linebacker who was a part of two of the team's Super Bowl victories (XVI and XIX) in the '80s.

    He was well known for the aggressive nature that he brought to the squad.

43. Ken Norton Jr. (1994-2000)

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    24 Sep 2000:  Ken Norton, Jr. #51 of the San Francisco 49ers walks onto the field during the game against the Dallas Cowboys at the Texas Stadium in Irving, Texas. The 49ers defeated the Cowboys 41-24.Mandatory Credit: Ronald Martinez  /Allsport
    Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

    After a successful stint with the Dallas Cowboys, Ken Norton Jr. joined the San Francisco 49ers via free agency. That season, he would go on to being placed on the All-Pro team. 

    Furthermore, after winning Super Bowl XXIX, he became the first NFL player ever to win three consecutive championships. 

42. Forrest Blue (1968-1974)

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    Forrest Blue was a stud offensive lineman for the San Francisco 49ers that attended four Pro Bowls during his 11-year career with the team.

41. Michael Carter (1984-1992)

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    SAN FRANCISCO - NOVEMBER 17:  Quarterback Bill Kenney #9 of the Kansas City Chiefs attempts to pass over defensive linemen Michael Carter #95 of the San Francisco 49ers during a game at Candlestick Park on November 17, 1985 in San Francisco, California.
    George Rose/Getty Images

    Michael Carter stood strong as a nose tackle at 6'2'', 285 pounds, and his tremendous athletic ability allowed him to create havoc in the opponent's backfield.

    Carter would go on to three Pro Bowls and won three Super Bowl championships as well.

    Interestingly enough, he's the only person to win an Olympic medal and Super Bowl ring in the same year. 

40. Garrison Hearst (1997-1998, 2001-2003)

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    SAN FRANCISCO - OCTOBER 5:  Running back Garrison Hearst #20 of the San Francisco 49ers runs the ball around linebacker Boss Bailey #97 of the Detroit Lions on October 5, 2003 at 3 Com Park in San Francisco, California.  The 49ers defeated the Lions 24-17
    Stephen Dunn/Getty Images

    Garrison Hearst was wildy successful in his first few seasons with the San Francisco 49ers, and looked as if he'd become the next great running back.

    He was an all-purpose player who could produce by both rushing the ball and receiving it. 

    However, a nasty broken ankle injury prematurely ended his time with the team.

    On a side note, NFL Films claims that his 96-yard game-winning touchdown run in overtime against the Jets is one of the two best running plays of all time.

39. Steve Wallace (1986-1996)

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    29 Jan 1995:  Offensive lineman Steve Wallace #74 of the San Francisco 49ers signals number one for victory during post game at Super Bowl  XXIX  against the San Diego Chargers at the Joe Robbie Stadium in Miami, Florida .  The 49ers won  49-26. Mandatory
    Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

    Steve Wallace was a member of the San Francisco 49ers team that won three Super Bowls. Head coach Bill Walsh often referred to Wallace as one of his favorite players ever. 

    Due to his physical style of play, Wallace suffered many concussions throughout his career. In fact, the head injuries were so prevalent that he was forced to wear a styrofoam helmet above his regular one. 

    On a side note, he earned the Community Player of the Year Award in 1992.

38. Kermit Alexander (1963-1969)

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    The San Francisco 49ers took Kermit Alexander with the eighth overall selection in the 1963 NFL Draft, and he was best known as the cornerback who played opposite Jimmy Johnson, which formed one of the most stifling tandems in the league. 

37. Tim McDonald (1993-1999)

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    21 Sep 1997:  Defensive back Tim McDonald #46 of the San Francisco 49ers celebrates during the 49ers 34-7 win over the Atlanta Falcons at 3Com Park in San Francisco, California. Mandatory Credit: Todd Warshaw  /Allsport
    Todd Warshaw/Getty Images

    Tim McDonald joined the San Francisco 49ers via free agency and played a pivotal role in their victory in Super Bowl XXIX. 

    McDonald was a six-time Pro Bowler, three of which were during his tenure with the 49ers.

    He also raised a total of $22,000 for the Boys and Girls Club of the Bay Area by donating $2,000 for every 49ers victory in 1993.

36. Eric Wright (1981-1990)

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    SAN FRANCISCO - OCTOBER 12:  Defensive back Eric Wright #21 of the San Francisco 49ers kneels on the field during a game against the Minnesota Vikings at Candlestick Park on October 12, 1986 in San Francisco, California.  The Minnesota Vikings won 27-24 i
    George Rose/Getty Images

    Eric Wright was widely considered one of the best, if not the best, cornerback of his playing era. He spent his entire 10-year career with the San Francisco 49ers and was part of four Super Bowl-winning squads. 

    His best season came in 1993 when he intercepted seven passes, returning them for a total of 164 yards and a pair of touchdowns. 

35. Freddie Solomon (1978-1985)

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    SAN FRANCISCO - JANUARY 6:  Wide receiver Freddie Solomon #88 of the San Francisco 49ers runs with the ball during the 1984 NFC Championship Game against the Chicago Bears at Candlestick Park on January 6, 1985 in San Francisco, California.  The 49ers won
    George Rose/Getty Images

    Freddie Solomon had several big games for the San Francisco 49ers, but none was bigger than a three-touchdown performance in which he scored one receiving, one rushing and one on a punt return.

    An interesting fact about Solomon was that he was indeed the intended receiver on Dwight Clark's famous "The Catch" play. However, he had slipped while breaking out of his cut. Of course, it all worked out in the end. 

34. Charles Haley (1986-1991, 1998-1999)

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    12 Dec 1999:  Charles Haley #94 of the San Francisco 49ers looks on from the field during the game against the Atlanta Falcons at 3 Comm Park in San Francisco, California. The 49ers defeated the Falcons 26-7. Mandatory Credit: Tom Hauck  /Allsport
    Tom Hauck/Getty Images

    Charles Haley was one of the most versatile defensive players of his time as he possessed the unique ability to generate an effective pass rush from both the outside linebacker and defensive end position. For his career, Haley had 100.5 sacks.

    Still today, he is the only NFL player to win five Super Bowls, which is truly a remarkable feat.

    Interestingly enough, his resume hasn't been enough to claim him a spot in the Pro Football Hall of Fame yet. 

33. Harris Barton (1987-1999)

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    1 Sep 1996:  Offensive lineman Harris Barton of the San Francisco 49ers looks on during a game against the New Orleans Saints at 3Com Park in San Francisco, California.  The 49ers won the game, 27-11. Mandatory Credit: Otto Greule Jr.  /Allsport
    Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images

    Harris Barton was an All-Pro offensive lineman for the San Francisco 49ers.

    He got off to a quick start in his career, earning second-place honors in the Rookie of the Year Award voting. 

32. Jeff Garcia (1999-2003)

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    SAN FRANCISCO - DECEMBER 7:  Jeff Garcia #5 of the San Francisco 49ers runs for a touchdown against the Arizona Cardinals during an NFL game on December 7, 2003 at Candelstick Park in San Francisco, California.  (Photo by Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images)
    Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images

    Jeff Garcia was signed to backup Steve Young for the San Francisco 49ers, but little did the team know that he would soon develop into a quality quarterback.

    After being awarded an opportunity, he capitalized on it and did an excellent job leading the team.

    Unfortunately, issues with Terrell Owens created tension and problems with ball management eventually led to his demise.

31. Guy McIntyre (1984-1993)

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    SAN FRANCISCO - NOVEMBER 15:  Guard Guy McIntyre #62 of the San Francisco 49ers is the lead blocker for running quarterback Steve Young #8 during a game against the New Orleans Saints at Candlestick Park on November 15, 1992 in San Francisco, California.
    George Rose/Getty Images

    Guy McIntyre, an offensive guard for the San Francisco 49ers, became the first lineman to revolutionize the game, as he was the first in NFL history to be used as a blocking back in Bill Walsh's "Elephant" short-yardage formation.

    This strategy was rather successful and later adapted by other teams in the league.  

30. Jesse Sapolu (1983-1997)

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    8 Sep 1996:  Offensive lineman Jesse Sapolu of the San Francisco 49ers looks on during a game against the St. Louis Rams at 3Com Park in San Francisco, California.  The 49ers won the game, 34-0. Mandatory Credit: Jed Jacobsohn  /Allsport
    Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images

    Jesse Sapolu was a powerful interior offensive lineman for the San Francisco 49ers, and was an integral key to four of the team's Super Bowl victories. 

    Even today, Sapolu remains active in the team's alumni and is recognized as one of the better O-lineman in team history

29. J.D. Smith (1956-1964)

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    J.D. Smith, a two-time Pro Bowl running back, currently ranks fifth on the San Francisco 49ers all-time rushing list. 

28. Dwight Hicks (1979-1985)

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    Dwight Hicks quickly transitioned into the NFL, and became the leader of the San Francisco 49ers secondary during their dynasty in the '80s.

    He registered 32 career interceptions and made several big plays in route to their two Super Bowl wins. 

27. Patrick Willis (2007-Present)

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    ST. LOUIS, MO - DECEMBER 21: Patrick Willis #52 of the San Francisco 49ers celebrates a victory against the St. Louis Rams at the Edward Jones Dome on December 21, 2008 in St. Louis, Missouri.  The 49ers beat the Rams 17-16.  (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Get
    Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images

    Ever since being drafted by the San Francisco 49ers, Patrick Willis has emerged as one of the premier defensive players in the NFL. In fact, he's arguably the best in the business today.

    He possesses tremendous athleticism, remarkable instincts and incredible passion for the game. That being so, he's able to produce at every level of the game, making an impact all over the field.

    There's no doubt in my mind that he's going to be much higher up on this list in the future. 

26. Merton Hanks (1991-1998)

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    16 Nov 1997:  Running back Merton Hanks of the San Francisco 49ers looks on during a game against the Carolina Panthers at 3Com Park in San Francisco, California.  The 49ers won the game, 27-19. Mandatory Credit: Otto Greule  /Allsport
    Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images

    Due to a slow combine 40-yard-dash time, Merton hanks took a significant dip in the NFL draft rankings.

    However, he proved his naysayers wrong by becoming a five-time All-Pro and making big-time interceptions and returns throughout his career.

25. Keena Turner (1980-1990)

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    NEW ORLEANS - JANUARY 28:  Linebacker Keena Turner #58 of the San Francisco 49ers runs with the ball in Super Bowl XXIV against the Denver Broncos at Louisiana Superdome on January 28, 1990 in New Orleans, Louisiana.  The 49ers won 55-10.  (Photo by Georg
    George Rose/Getty Images

    The San Francisco 49ers traded for Keena Turner on draft day, and it has proved to be a wise decision.

    Turner played his entire career with the team and helped win four Super Bowl rings.

24. Frank Gore (2005-Present)

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    SAN FRANCISCO - OCTOBER 12:  Running back Frank Gore #21 of the San Francisco 49ers celebrates a 6-yard touchdown run against the Philadelphia Eagles during their game on October 12, 2008 at Candlestick Park in San Francisco, California. Philadelphia won
    Greg Trott/Getty Images

    Frank Gore is a scrappy running back who excels as a downhill runner. 

    He's amassed 1,000 yards on the ground in each of his past four seasons and doesn't seem like he'll slow down anytime soon. Moreover, he has the ability to beat his opponents in the receiving game as well.

    All in all, Gore is a superb talent and could eventually be the best running back in team history.

23. Terrell Owens (1996-2003)

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    MINNEAPOLIS - SEPTEMBER 28:  Wide receiver Terrell Owens #81 of the San Francisco 49ers stands on the sidelines during the game agains the Minnesota Vikings at the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome on September 28, 2003 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The Vikings d
    Elsa/Getty Images

    Even though we often overlook it, Terrell Owens is actually one of the greatest receivers of all time, and he started off his career with a bang with the San Francisco 49ers.

    He set a record with 20 receptions in a game with the team and formed a formidable duo with Jerry Rice.

    Unfortunately, his antics were too much for the team to deal with and he was eventually traded. 

22. Randy Cross (1976-1988)

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    STANFORD, CA - JANUARY 20:  Running back Roger Craig #33 of the San Francisco 49ers follows his blocker offensive guard Randy Cross #51 in Super Bowl XIX against the Miami Dolphins at Stanford Stadium on January 20, 1985 in Stanford, California. The 49ers
    George Rose/Getty Images

    Randy Cross played 13 seasons in the NFL, six of which he was named an All-Pro offensive lineman. 

    Furthermore, Cross became a mainstay of the unit and won three Super Bowls with the team.

21. John Taylor (1987-1995)

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    SAN FRANCISCO - NOVEMBER 13:  Wide receiver John Taylor #82 of the San Francisco 49ers runs with the ball during a game against the Dallas Cowboys at Candlestick Park on November 13, 1994 in San Francisco, California.  The 49ers won 21-14.  (Photo by Geor
    George Rose/Getty Images

    The San Francisco 49ers drafted John Taylor in the third round, and this selection now ranks amongst ESPN's Top 25 biggest steals of all time.

    Despite often being overshadowed, he was an excellent complementary receiver to Jerry Rice. Even though he was the No. 2 option, he would go onto to set numerous records. 

    In his career, he's best known for the game-winning touchdown that he scored in Super Bowl XXIII. 

20. John Brodie (1957-1973)

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    John Brodie started off struggling for playing time with Y.A. Tittle, but he eventually established himself as one of the elite quarterbacks of the 1960s. 

    When he retired, he ranked third in career passing yards. 

19. Brent Jones (1987-1997)

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    15 Dec 1996:  Tight end Brent Jones of the San Francisco 49ers catches the ball during a game against the Pittsburgh Steelers at Three Rivers Stadium in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  The 49ers won the game 25-15. Mandatory Credit: Al Bello  /Allsport
    Al Bello/Getty Images

    Brent Jones was acquired through a trade with the Pittsburgh Steelers, and he would go on to have a illustrious career with the team.

    He finished with 417 receptions for 5,195 yards and 33 touchdowns. 

18. Tom Rathman (1986-1993)

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    SAN FRANCISCO - JANUARY 15:  Full back Tom Rathman #44 of the San Francisco 49ers runs with the ball during the 1993 NFC Championship game against the New York Giants at Candlestick Park on January 15, 1994 in San Francisco, California.  The 49ers won 44-
    George Rose/Getty Images

    Tom Rathman, a fullback for the San Francisco 49ers, was famous for blocking for the great Roger Craig.

    Moreover, he chipped in production as both a runner and receiver.

    Now, he is currently the team's running backs coach.

17. Fred Dean (1981-1985)

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    The San Francisco 49ers traded for Fred Dean and he went on to have a very successful tenure with the team.

    He was one of the best at generating an effective pass rush and had 93 sacks on his career.

    He was a huge reason the team was able to win multiple Super Bowls. 

16. Dwight Clark (1979-1987)

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    SAN FRANCISCO - DECEMBER 8:  Wide receiver Dwight Clark #87 of the San Francisco 49ers catches a pass against defensive back Rufus Bess #21 of the Minnesota Vikings during a game at Candlestick Park on December 8, 1984 in San Francisco, California.  The 4
    George Rose/Getty Images

    Dwight Clark had an amazing career with the San Francisco 49ers, and he quickly became one of Bill Walsh and Joe Montana's favorite targets.

    Of course, Clark is most famous for "The Catch" in a 1982 NFC playoff game against the Dallas Cowboys.

15. Leo Nomellini (1950-1963)

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    Leo Nomellini was the San Francisco 49ers' first draft choice in franchise history, and it certainly set the good fortunes for years to come.

    Nomellini was an All-Pro on both the offensive and defensive sides of the ball.

14. Joe Perry (1948-1960, 1963)

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    Joe Perry, a fullback in the NFL, was best recognized for his durability, which allowed him to play in three separate decades. 

    Furthermore, he was the NFL's all-time leading rusher when he retired. Of course, that record would eventually be broken by the Cleveland Browns' Jim Brown. 

    Coincidentally, Perry played alongside McElhenny back in college where the two won a pair of national championships.

13. Gene Washington (1969-1977)

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    Gene Washington was an 11-year player for the San Francisco 49ers, where he established himself as a dynamic receiver.

    Interestingly enough, playing in the NFL is merely one of his several accomplishments. 

12. Y.A. Tittle (1951-1960)

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    Y.A. Tittle spent 10 seasons with the San Francisco 49ers, most of which he was forced to share playing time with other quarterbacks.

    Nonetheless, many of his career records still stand proud today. 

    While he wasn't at his best with the 49ers, Tittle would go on to have a Hall of Fame career.

11. John Henry Johnson (1954-1956)

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    John Henry Johnson was a fullback in the NFL, and he played a few seasons for the San Francisco 49ers. 

    When he retired, he ranked fourth on the NFL's all-time rushing list. 

10. Bob St. Clair (1953-1963)

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    Bob St. Clair, nicknamed the "Geek," was a Hall of Fame offensive tackle who played his entire career for the San Francisco 49ers.

    In fact, the team decided to rename Kezar Stadium in his name.

9. Roger Craig (1983-1990)

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    SAN FRANCISCO - JANUARY 20:  Running back Roger Craig #33 of the San Francisco 49ers looks for room to run during the 1990 NFC Championship game against the New York Giants at Candlestick Park on January 20, 1991 in San Francisco, California.  The Giants
    George Rose/Getty Images

    Roger Craig was one of the first dual-threat running backs in the NFL, as he was able to shred defenses both with his receiving and rushing ability.

    Craig also invented the high-knee running style that is often practiced today.

    What I admired most about him, though, was his ability to play at his best on the biggest stages. 

8. Hugh McElhenny (1952-1960)

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    Upon entering the league as the San Francisco 49ers' first-round selection in the 1952 NFL Draft, Hugh McElhenny immediately made a name for himself due to his exciting brand of play.

    He was named the Rookie of the Year, and would go on to five Pro Bowls.

7. Jimmy Johnson (1961-1976)

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    Jimmy Johnson played an incredible 15 seasons in the NFL, all of which he played with the San Francisco 49ers.

    He was a versatile talent who played at safety, wide receiver and corneback. During his career, he finished with 47 interceptions and returned them for a total of 615 yards.

    The five-time Pro Bowler and member of the 1970s All-Decade team was enshrined into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1994.

6. Dave Wilcox (1964-1974)

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    Dave Wilcox had a very successful career in the NFL, as he was elected to seven Pro Bowls and was eventually inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2000.

    Of course, this was rightfully so as Wilcox established himself as one of the premier outside linebackers of his time. By doing so, he earned himself the nickname "The Intimidator."

    It was well documented that Wilcox made it his goal to prevent any player from getting off for a block or pass route. He always enjoyed being in pursuit and involved in the action. 

5. Bryant Young (1994-2007)

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    SAN FRANCISCO - DECEMBER 23:  Bryant Young #97 of the San Francisco 49ers is introduced in his last career home game during an NFL game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Monster Park December 23, 2007 in San Francisco, California.  (Photo by Jed Jacobso
    Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images

    Despite playing most of his career during the 49ers' down years, Bryant Young was a dominant force off the edge as he holds the franchise record with 89.5 sacks.

    In my opinion, he’s severely underrated. 

4. Steve Young (1987-1999)

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    29 Jan 1995: SAN FRANCISCO QUARTERBACK STEVE YOUNG CELEBRATES DURING THE FOURTH QUARTER OF THE SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS VERSUS THE SAN DIEGO CHARGERS IN SUPER BOWL XXIX AT JOE ROBBIE STADIUM IN MIAMI, FLORIDA. YOUNG SET A SUPER BOWL RECORD BY THROWING SIX TOUC
    Rick Stewart/Getty Images

    It’s truly amazing how the 49ers were able to make the fluid transition from Hall of Fame quarterback to Hall of Fame quarterback as Steve Young successfully met the high expectations that Joe Montana left him with.

    Young is a three-time Super Bowl champion and holds the record for the highest quarterback passer rating of all time.

3. Ronnie Lott (1981-1990)

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    SAN FRANCISCO - JANUARY 6:  Defenseman Ronnie Lott #42 of the San Francisco 49ers follows the offense during a game against the Minnesota Vikings at Candlestick Park on January 6, 1990 in San Francisco, California.  The Niners defeated the Vikings 41-13.
    Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images

    Whether he lined up at cornerback, free safety or strong safety, Ronnie Lott was one of the most feared hitters of all time. He set the tempo for the 49ers defense and was a force to reckon with in the secondary.

    Furthermore, he was elected as a member of both the 1980s and '90s All-Decade teams.

2. Joe Montana (1979-1992)

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    13 Jan 1991:  Quarterback Joe Montana #16 of the San Francisco 49ers raises his hands in celebration as he signals a touch down following a successful reception in the endzone during a play in the 49ers 28-10 victory over the Washington Redskins at Candls
    Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images

    Joe Montana, or Joe Cool, as many referred to him, was one of the best when under pressure. In fact, he led the 49ers to 31 comeback victories, which makes him the most clutch quarterback ever, in my mind. 

    Moreover, the eight-time Pro Bowler was an integral key to four Super Bowl victories.

1. Jerry Rice (1985-2000)

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    17 Dec 2000:  Jerry Rice #80 of the San Francisco 49ers walks off the field during the game against the Chicago Bears at the 3Com Park in San Francisco, California. The 49ers defeated the Bears 17-0.Mandatory Credit: Jed Jacobsohn  /Allsport
    Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images

    Jerry Rice holds virtually every statistical record for receivers and was voted as the No. 1 player of all time by NFL Network. 

    He was an 11-time first-team All-Pro and was especially dominant in his three Super Bowl victories, earning MVP honors in one of them.

    Therefore, in my opinion, he’s undoubtedly the greatest player to ever put on a San Francisco 49ers uniform.  

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