There’s arguably no position in all of the professional sports that’s more important than that of a quarterback in football. They may say that defense wins championships, but a good defense can only go so far with a lousy man behind center. The San Francisco 49ers have had more than their fair share of lousy quarterbacks, but they’ve also had some of the best quarterbacks to ever play the game. The 49ers are tied for second all-time in Super Bowl wins with five. If it wasn’t for the stellar play they got from their quarterback’s they might not have any.
While the 49ers were flushed with talented gunslinger’s in 1980s and 1990s, the position hasn’t been too kind to them in the past 15 years. They have not able to find a quarterback that is willing t0 take the ball and run with it ( Colin Kaepernick excluded). The San Francisco 49ers have been a pretty terrible team in recent years and if they want to take a step in the right direction, they need to address their quarterback situation. It might be best for the team to look at their past history of QB’s in order to find their QB of the future.
Without further ado, let’s rank all 33 of the San Francisco 49ers quarterbacks since the start of the Super Bowl era.
33. Jim Druckenmiller
The 49ers drafted Jim Druckenmiller in the first round of the 1997 draft, hoping that he would be Steve Young’s eventual successor. While the 49ers wanted to bring him along slowly, they had him start week two if his rookie season after Steve Young went down with a hand injury. It ended up being a bad decision by the 49ers coaching staff. While San Francisco somehow managed to pull off a win by defeating St. Louis 15-12, Druckenmiller was a trainwreck. He only completed 10 out of 28 passes while throwing three interceptions.
Druckenmiller would appear in just two games the following season, before being traded to the Miami Dolphins. After not being able to hold an NFL job, he signed with the newly created XFL where he would have the most success of his professional career. Jim Druckenmiller is not only the biggest quarterback draft bust in 49ers history, but he is arguably the team’s biggest draft bust at any position.
32. Cody Pickett
Cody Pickett was taken all the way in the seventh round of the 2004 draft by the 49ers after spending five years with the Washington Huskies. Pickett wasn’t even guaranteed to make the team, nevermind get into a regular season game, but he defied the odds. Pickett began the 2004 season as the team’s fourth-string quarterback, but he actually played the majority of his time on special teams. He even played safety and wide receiver during practices.
Pickett got his first taste of NFL action at the end of the 2004 season when he came into a game against the Buffalo Bills. The Niners were in the middle of getting blown out by the Bills, but Pickett didn’t help by going 4-10 with two interceptions. The following season, with all the 49ers quarterbacks going down with injuries, Pickett would appear in five games, starting two. His numbers were absolutely terrible as he had a quarterback rating of 28.3. The 2005 season would be the last time he ever appeared in an NFL game.
31. Ken Dorsey
Ken Dorsey was one of the top quarterbacks in all of college football while playing for the University of Miami. He was twice a finalist for the Heisman Trophy and had a combined record of 38-2 as Miami’s starting QB. Despite setting numerous team records, scouts didn’t think he would make it in the NFL due to his lack of arm strength. ‘Spoiler alert’, the scouts were right.
Dorsey fell all the way to the seventh round of the 2003 draft before the 49ers selected him. He would go on to play three seasons with the Niners, where he was able to start 10 games for the team. His lack of arm strength and accuracy proved to be his downfall as was barely able to complete 50% of his pass attempts. His record as a starting QB with the San Francisco ended up being a dismal 2-8. Dorsey would spend time with the Cleveland Browns before finishing his football career in 2011 with the CFL’s Toronto Argonauts.
30. Scott Bull
Scott Bull was drafted out of Arkansas by the 49ers in the sixth round of the 1976 draft. He began his career backing up Jim Plunkett. He started two games for the Niners in his rookie season. His stats were pretty poor as he had a completion percentage of just 43.8% and he threw four INT’s. However, due San Francisco’s strong defense, he won both his games as a starter.
After not starting a single game in 1977, Bull started a career-high five games during the 1978 season. If you can believe it his numbers actually got worse than his rookie season. He only managed to win one of his games, while completing less than 40% of his passes. His worst stat of all was his TD to INT ratio, which 11 INT’s compared to just one TD. His career was finished after that embarrassing season.
29. Joe Reed
In 1973, the 49ers knew that their team was aging, their longtime quarterback John Brodie especially wasn’t getting any younger. As it would happen, Brodie battled through an arm injury throughout the 1973 season. At first, the Niners replaced him with Steve Spurrier, but after he wasn’t producing results, the team turned to third-stringer Joe Reed. However, Reed was arguably worse than Spurrier. In the three games he started, he threw three interceptions and had a dismal quarterback rating of 44.8.
Heading into the 1974 season, Joe Reed was named the team’s starting quarterback. While he managed to win two out of his four starts, his play was dreadful. He threw just two touchdowns compared to seven interceptions. However, his most embarrassing stat of all was his awful 22.1 quarterback rating. After the season ended Reed signed with Detroit Lions where he actually became a decent quarterback.
28. Dennis Morrison
The 1974 season was a revolving door for the 49ers when it came to starting quarterbacks. The team went through five different quarterbacks, one of those guys was twenty-three year old Dennis Morrison. The Niners selected Morrison in the 14th round of the 1973 NFL draft. They probably never expected Morrison to start a game for the team, nevermind just a year after he was drafted, but that is exactly what happened.
After Joe Reed struggled to put up points, the Niners decided to give Morrison a shot at leading the offense. While he managed to throw a touchdown in his very first NFL start, it would be the only one of his career. He went 0-2 as a starter for San Francisco while throwing five interceptions. The 1974 season would be the only professional season of his career.
27. Steve Stenstrom
After a solid four-year run at Stanford University, the Kansas City Chiefs took Steve Stenstrom in the fourth round of the 1995 draft. Before he even played a game with the Chiefs he was placed on waivers and was picked up by the Chicago Bears. He would go on to play three seasons in Chicago where he struggled going 1-6 as a starter while throwing 4 TD’s compared to 8 INT’s.
Stenstrom signed with 49ers in 1999 to backup Steve Young. When Young went down with an injury, Stenstrom got to start three games for the Niners. His play was just down right terrible as he failed to win a game or even throw a single touchdown. After the 1999 season, Stenstrom would never take another regular season NFL snap again.
26. Trent Dilfer
Trent Dilfer won a Super Bowl as the starting quarterback for the Baltimore Ravens back in 2000. While some people believe he was one of the worst starting quarterbacks to ever win a Super Bowl, the fact is he still won it. However, when the 49ers acquired him in a trade in 2006, the plan was Dilfer to just be a mentor for Alex Smith.
Due to injuries and the lackluster play of Alex Smith, Trent Dilfer would actually get to start seven games for San Francisco. Dilfer proved he wasn’t much of a better option than Alex Smith, as he only managed to win one game as a starter, and threw just seven TD’s compared to 12 INT’s. Dilfer’s one season with the Niners ended up being his last one in the NFL after he suffered a season-ending concussion.
25. Bob Gagliano
Bob Gagliano was originally drafted by the Kansas City Chiefs in 1981 draft. He played two seasons with the Chiefs as a backup where his only regular season contribution was throwing a seven-yard pass. After not getting any playing time, Gagliano tried his luck with the Denver Gold of the United States Football League.
In 1987, NFL players were in the midst of a strike. Teams were forced to find replacement players, that is when the 49ers gave Gagliano a call. On Monday, Oct. 5, 1987, he got his one and only start as a 49er when the team took on the New York Giants. The Niners ended up blowing out the Giants 41-21. After the strike ended, Gagliano remained on the team as a backup, and he even got a chance to throw his first touchdown. He would go on to have the most success of his career with the Detroit Lions, before retiring in 1995.
24. J.T. O’Sullivan
J.T. O’Sullivan was a journeyman quarterback if the ever was one. By the time he signed with the 49ers in 2008, he already had stints with seven different NFL teams. Prior to signing with 49ers, O’Sullivan’s best season came with the Detroit Lions in 2007. He was able to get into a career-high four games, but his play on the field was mediocre at best.
O’Sullivan had a strong training camp with the 49ers in 2008 and actually won the starting job. It also didn’t hurt that the San Francisco’s new offensive coordinator Jim Martz had O’Sullivan in Detroit the year before. He would go on to start eight games for the Niners where he sported a record of 2-6. While O’Sullivan showed a little bit of promise, his biggest fault was that fact that he was a turnover machine. At the time he was benched in Week 8, he led the league with 11 fumbles and was tied for the lead with 11 interceptions.
23. Chris Weinke
The former Heisman Trophy winner began is NFL career in with the Carolina Panthers in 2001. To say his rookie season was a disaster would be an understatement. He started 15 games for the Panthers and although he won his first game, he lost every other one. Weinke would serve as a backup for the Panthers for the next few seasons before being released in 2006.
During the 2007 season, San Francisco’s quarterbacks were dropping like flies. They were in desperate need of finding a veteran quarterback, so they signed Weinke as an emergency stop gap to finish the season. He would go on to start the final game of the season, which ended up being a 20-7 loss to Clevland. Weinke wasn’t a complete disaster for the 49ers, but he didn’t do enough to impress the team to bring him back the following season.
22. Norm Snead
In 1974, the San Francisco’s quarterback situation never looked so bleak. Their best QB they ever had John Brodie, had decided to call it a career. After the Plan ‘A’ and ‘B’ for replacements didn’t work out, the Niners acquired thirty-five year old journeyman quarterback Norm Snead in hopes of saving their season. Snead played just three games that season before he was passed over by unheralded rookie Tom Owen.
After a strong training camp, Snead emerged as the Niners starting quarterback heading into the 1975 season. Snead started the team’s first seven games, but he only managed to win two games. His play on the field was lackluster and it was clear that his age had caught up to him. He played just one more season with the New York Giants before calling it a career.
21. Mike Moroski
The 1986 season was a tough one for the 49ers, especially when it came to the quarterback position. They thought they were set with Joe Montana at the reigns, but a serious week one injury to Montana caused their season to be in serious jeopardy. San Francisco then turned to Jeff Kemp, and although he played fairly well, he too went down with an injury. This when the Niners turned to the veteran Mike Moroski.
Moroski had only made seven career starts in his previous eight seasons in the league, but now it was up to him to keep the 49ers playoff hopes alive. He actually ended up playing pretty good, especially for a third stringer. He started two games for the team and a 1-1 record with throwing for nearly 500 yards with two TDs. Moroski announced his retirement following the 1986 season.
20. Matt Cavanaugh
Matt Cavanaugh was a second-round pick of the New England Patriots in the 1978 NFL draft. He spent four seasons with the Patriots where he was mostly a backup. He did get to start eights games for the team in 1981, but his play on the field wasn’t pretty. He finished with a 1-7 record as a starter and threw 13 INT’s compared to just 5 TD’s.
Cavanaugh signed with the 49ers in 1983 and stayed with the team for three seasons. He started just two games for San Francisco, but he did produce some good numbers. He had a perfect 2-0 record as a starter with five touchdowns compared to just one interception. Cavanaugh finished his career with the New York Giants, which included winning his second Super Bowl in 1990.
19. Steve DeBerg
Steve Deberg (Pictured Left) was originally drafted in the tenth round of the 1977 NFL Draft by the Dallas Cowboys. However, before the start of his rookie season, he was waived by the Cowboys, so the Niners decided to give him a chance. Deberg’s first season in the NFL was a disaster, as both him and the team struggled mightily. He had a 1-10 record as a starter and he threw an ugly 22 interceptions.
1979 season would be Deberg’s last season as the Niners starting quarterback. Although the team still failed to put up wins, they were a lot more competitive of a team under new coach Bill Walsh. Deberg also improved greatly over his rookie season, as he seen his quarterback rating improve from an atrocious 40.0 to a respectable 73.1. Although DeBerg held the 49ers starting QB role heading into the 1980 season, after a couple of bad games, including one game where he threw five interceptions, Bill Walsh handed the reigns over to a man named Joe Montana, and the rest is history. DeBerg would go on to have very lengthy and successful career NFL, he finally hung up his cleats for good in 1998 at the age 45.
18. Blaine Gabbert
Blaine Gabbert was once a highly touted quarterback who was a former top ten pick of the Jacksonville Jaguars. His run with the Jaguars lasted just three seasons as he struggled mightily and he was labeled by most people a gigantic draft bust. The 49ers thought Gabbert had more talent than he had shown in Jacksonville so they acquired him in 2014 for a 6th round draft pick.
Gabbert spent his first season as a 49er as a backup to Colin Kaepernick, while appearing in just one game. With Kaepernick struggling the following season, 49ers head coach Jim Tomsula handed over the starting reigns to Gabbert. He would start the final eight games of the season for San Francisco where he arguably put on the best performance of his career. Gabbert would remain the starter heading into the 2016 season. Although he showed some great athletic ability, Gabbert and Chip Kelly’s offense simply just wasn’t producing points. He lost his starting job to Kaepernick in Week 6, which ultimately ended his time in San Francisco.
17. Jim Plunkett
Jim Plunkett was a standout player at Stanford University, setting numerous team records. He was so good that the New England Patriots made him the first overall selection in the 1970 NFL Draft. Plunkett would start for the Patriots for five seasons where his play was good, but injuries and inconsistency stopped him from living up to his true potential.
In 1976, the 49ers were looking for a quarterback who could be their long-term solution for the position going forward. They paid a hefty price, which included three first-round draft picks, but the Niners felt they had their quarterback of the future in Plunkett. Unfortunately for San Francisco, Plunkett just lasted two seasons with the team. While he got off to a great start as a Niner, winning six out of his first seven games, it was all downhill after that. His final totals as a Niner included 19 TDs and 30 INTs.
16. George Mira
George Mira actually started his career with the 49ers before the Super Bowl era in 1964. He spent five seasons with San Francisco where he was primarily a backup to John Brodie. He did get to start five games with the Niners, and his final stats with the team included throwing 17 touchdowns 15 interceptions.
After Mira left the 49ers in 1969 he had brief stints with Miami, Baltimore, and Philidelphia. After leaving the NFL in 1971, he would go on to have the most success of his career while playing for the Birmingham Americans of the World Football League. In 1974, he not only did his team win the championship, but he was named the games most valuable player. Mira finished his career in 1977 as a player-coach for the CFL’s Toronto Argonauts.
15. Ty Detmer
Despite having a couple of the greatest seasons for a quarterback in college football history and winning the 1990 Heisman Trophy for his efforts, most experts thought Ty Detmer was too small for the NFL. He had to wait all the way until the ninth round of the 1992 draft before the Green Bay Packers called his name. Detmer would spend for seasons with the Packers only appearing in seven games because he was stuck behind the future Packers legend, Bret Favre.
In 1996, Detmer signed with the Philidelphia Eagles where he was able to start 18 games over two seasons. It was in his time with the Eagles where Detmer proved he could play in the league. In 1998, the 49ers signed Detmer as the primary backup for Steve Young. Detmer got to start just one game for San Francisco that season, where he helped the team win by throwing three touchdowns. The 1999 season would be Detmer’s only one in San Francisco. He bounced around from team to team before retiring in 2005.
14. Shaun Hill
After spending time with the Minnesota Vikings, as well as some time in NFL Europe, Shaun Hill signed with the 49ers 2006. He started his time with the team third on the depth chart and would have to wait until December of 2007 to finally get his first snap with the Niners. After Trent Dilfer went down with a concussion, Hill took the reigns as the starter for the remainder of the season. Hill didn’t take his chance for granted, as he was superb in his three games of action, throwing five TDs compared to just one INT.
Hill’s play down the stretch in the 2007 season earned him a three-year contract extension. He started the 2008 season second on the depth chart, but after J.T O’Sullivan struggled, Hill was once again named the starter. He would start the next 14 games for the Niners, where he became known for his late game heroics. Unfortunately for Hill, he struggled in a game against the Detroit Lions and was pulled. His replacement Alex Smith, caught fire and Hill would never take another snap for the Niners. Hill’s solid play with the 49ers allowed him to have a lengthy NFL career.
13. Troy Smith
Despite being the 2006 Heisman Trophy winner, Troy Smith didn’t get drafted by the Baltimore Ravens until the fifth round of the 2007 draft. During his time with the Ravens, Smith showed some promise with his scrambling ability. However, a freak illness and the emergence of Joe Flacco all but ended his time in Baltimore.
Afer being released by the Ravens 2010, Smith signed a one-year deal with the Niners. Although he started the season third on the depth chart, Smith would eventually earn the chance to start a game, which made him the first ever African-American quarterback to start a game in franchise history. He would go on to start six games for the team, finishing with a decent 3-3 record. Despite outperforming all other 49er quarterbacks during the 2010 season, the team decided not to resign Smith.
12. Tom Owen
After their long-time quarterback John Brodie retired after the 1973 season, San Francisco was in desperate need for a new quarterback to take charge. Steve Spurrier was supposed to be the quarterback to lead the 49ers, but a shoulder injury in preseason would sideline him for months.
After going through two other quarterbacks without much success, the Niners turned to rookie Tom Owens. The 13th round draft choice ended up turning the season around for the 49ers. After the team lost seven straight, Owens and his ten touchdown passes helped the team go 4-3 in its last stretch of the season. Despite showing promise in his rookie year, Owens once again found himself buried on the depth chart. He left the team in 1977 and would most notably play four seasons as a backup for New England.
11. Tim Rattay
After becoming arguably the greatest quarterback in Louisana Tech history, San Francisco drafted Tim Rattay in the seventh round of the 2000 NFL Draft. In his rookie season, Rattay would earn a spot on the Niners opening day roster by beating out fellow rookie quarterback Giovanni Carmazzi (who was a 2000 third round draft pick).
Rattay would have to wait all the way until the 2003 season before he got to see any regular season action. Replacing an injured Jeff Garcia, Rattay played fairly solid, winning two out of his three starts. After the Niners released Garcia due to salary cap issues, they named Rattay the starter ahead of the 2004 season. Although his numbers as a starter weren’t terrible (his highlight being when he set a team record with 38 completions in a game), he came up empty in the most important stat category, wins.
10. Steve Spurrier
Steve Spurrier may be best known for his coaching career, but he actually had a decent run as a player with the San Francisco 49ers. When the Niners took Spurrier in the third round of the 1967 draft, it was their hope that he would one day take over the John Brodie as the team starting QB. Spurrier’s NFL career got off to a bit of a slow start as he didn’t even throw his first touchdown pass until his third season.
Spurrier had to wait until the 1972 season before finally getting a real shot at becoming the team’s starting quarterback. He started a career-high nine games for the team and was a savior for the team. The Niners had a 2-3 record prior to Spurrier starting, but when they gave him the reigns, they went 6-1-1 and made the playoffs. However, Spurrier played terrible in the final game of the regular season and was replaced by John Brodie in the playoffs. Spurrier would spend a few more seasons in San Francisco, but he was stuck in a backup role for the most part.
9. Jeff Kemp
Jeff Kemp started out his NFL career with the Los Angeles Rams. His best season with the Rams came in 1985 when threw a career-high 13 touchdowns which helped the team earn a playoff spot. After losing his starting job in Los Angeles to Dieter Brock, Kemp signed with the Niners in 1986 to backup Joe Montana.
In the very first game of the 1986 season, Joe Montana went down with a serious back injury. This meant that Kemp was now the man in charge in San Francisco. Although he initially struggled, throwing a couple of game changing interceptions in his first game, he managed to win his next three games. Kemp was starting to look like a solid replacement for Montona, throwing 11 TD’s while posting a solid 85.5 quarterback rating. However, Kemp lost his starting job when he went down with an injury. Kemp would spend parts of five seasons with the Seattle Seahawks before calling it a career in 1991.
8. Steve Bono
Steve Bono had trouble getting playing time at the beginning of his career. In first four seasons in the NFL with Minnesota and Pittsburgh, he managed to start just three games. This is why it seemed like a strange move for Bono to sign with San Francisco in 1989. The chances of him seeing the field seemed slim as he was third on the depth chart behind future all-time greats in Steve Young and Joe Montana.
Bono remained patient while with the Niners, and he eventually got his chance to start. During the 1991 season, both Young and Montana were injured which opened the door for Bono. He would start six games for the Niners where his play was excellent. He finished fourth in the league with an 88.5 passer rating. Once the Niners quarterbacks healed up Bono went back to being a backup. He was traded to Kansas City in 1994, where he would go on to have the best years of his career, including a 1995 Pro Bowl appearance.
7. Elvis Grbac
After playing at the University of Michigan where he set numerous team records, the 49ers selected Elvis Grbac in the eighth round of the 1993 NFL Draft. Grbac spent his rookie season backing up Steve Young, but he did manage to get into 11 games with the team. In his limited play time, his numbers were excellent as he had a 70% completion rating, to go along with two TDs and a 98.2 quarterback rating.
In 1995, Grbac got a chance to start five games, replacing an injured Steve Young. While he was no Steve Young, Grbac was pretty darn close. He had a 3-2 record as the starter while throwing eight TDs and had a terrific 96.6 quarterback rating. He would go on to play just one more season for the 49ers, where he struggled at times, but he was still a reliable backup. Grbac signed with the Kansas City Chiefs in 1997 so he could get a shot a being starting quarterback.
6. Alex Smith
After a very successful run with the University of Utah, the 49ers took Alex Smith with the very first selection the 2005 draft. The first few years of Smith’s time in San Francisco didn’t go too smoothly. He battled numerous injuries and when he did play he was mediocre at best. Smith’s struggles could be partly blamed on the fact that he wasn’t able to find any consistency due to the fact that he a different offensive coordinator in each of his first six seasons.
The 2011 season would be the year that Alex Smith would breakout for the Niners. Under new head coach Jim Harbough, he found some confidence. Although he didn’t put up huge numbers ( just 17 TDs), but he minimized his mistakes ( just five INTs). Smith led the Niners to a 13-3 record and a first-round bye in the playoffs. Although he put up a valiant effort in the playoffs, the team came up short. Smith was on pace for another great season in 2012, but he suffered an injury which paved the way for Colin Kaepernick to take over the starting role, a role which he would not give up. The 49ers traded Alex Smith to the Kansas City Chiefs in 2013.
5. Colin Kaepernick
Colin Kaepernick was a 2011 second round pick of San Francisco. He spent his rookie season backing up long-time 49er Alex Smith. It wasn’t until Smith went down with a concussion in the middle of the 2012 season, that Kaepernick got a chance to show what he could do, and boy did he ever deliver. Not only did Kaepernick have a rocket of an arm, his running ability as a quarterback was almost second to none. He would eventually lead the 49ers all they way to the Super Bowl, with the team coming up short against the Baltimore Ravens.
The 2013 season was Colin Kaepernick’s first full season as the team’s starter. He had a fantastic year, throwing 21 TDs, while rushing for over 500 yards and adding another four TD’s. While Kaepernick had another solid season in 2014, the team failed to make the playoffs with an 8-8 record. The 49ers hired a new coach in Jim Tomsula ahead of the 2015 season, and Kaepernick would struggle under him. Tomsula eventually benched him in favor of Blaine Gabbert. While Colin Kaepernick had a bit of bounce back year in 2016, his future with the 49ers is still very uncertain.
4. Jeff Garcia
Before Jeff Garcia played in the NFL he was a star player in the Canadian Football League. In his final season with the CFL’s Calgary Stampeders, he helped the team win the league championship. In 1999, Garcia wanted to try his luck down in the NFL, so he signed with the 49ers to backup Steve Young, When Young suffered a career ending concussion, Garcia took over his spot. While he initially struggled, he showed a ton of promise closing out the season.
Although the team struggled in Garcia’s first full season as a starter in 2000, he himself had a breakout year. He set a new 49ers’ team record with 4,278 passing yards while throwing for 31 TDs. Garcia improved his numbers even more in 2001, but more importantly he led the team to a 12-4 record. Garcia became the first quarterback in 49er’s history to have back to back seasons with 30 or more touchdown passes. Garcia would play two more decent seasons with San Francisco before signing with Cleveland in 2004.
3. John Brodie
John Brodie was a tremendous quarterback who played an incredible 17 seasons in the NFL, all with the San Francisco 49ers. Although he was never able to lead the Niners to a Super Bowl win, he did just about everything else. Brodie spent his first few seasons backing up another 49er great in Y.A Little. It wasn’t until the 1961 season that Brodie became the full-time starter for San Francisco.
Brodie had a particularly special season with Niners in 1970. He led the entire league with 24 touchdown passes. He was named the NFL MVP for his efforts. After going through a couple of injury-plagued seasons, Brodie called it a career in 1973. The fact that the 49ers struggled so much to find a replacement for Brodie, proved just how valuable a quarterback he was.
2. Steve Young
Steve Young’s NFL career got off to a rough start. As a member of the struggling Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Young had a combined 3-16 record as a starter in his first two seasons. Despite his lackluster play on the field, 49ers coach Bill Walsh thought Young still had great potential.
The 49ers acquired Steve Young in 1987 to backup Joe Montana. It wasn’t too long before he was replacing an injured Montana. In Young’s first start, he threw four touchdowns, in the first quarter alone. That was just a sign of things to come as Montana wasn’t able to stay healthy, which led to Young taking over the Niners starting QB position permanently. While Young played like a Hall of Fame quarterback throughout his tenure in San Francisco, the 1994 season was particularly special. He finally led Niners to a Super Bowl win on his own, while being named the game’s MVP in the process.
1. Joe Montana
Not only is Joe Montana the greatest quarterback in San Francisco 49ers history, he is arguably the greatest quaterback to ever play the game, period. After an incredible career at Notre Dame, Montana was drafted in the third round of the 1979 NFL Draft. Montana became the Niners starting QB in middle of the 1980 season and held that role for the next decade.
During his run with the Niners, Montana led the team to four Super Bowl victories, while being named Super Bowl’s Most Valuable Player three times in the process. He currently holds many 49ers all-time records including total yards, TD passes, and wins. With stats like those, and the countless clutch plays he made throughout his career, it’s easy to see why ” Joe Cool” is an absolute legend.