San Francisco 49ers

From Academic Kids

Template:NFL team The San Francisco 49ers are a National Football League team that plays in San Francisco, California. They tie the Dallas Cowboys with the record for most Super Bowl victories (5). The team's headquarters and practice facility are located in Santa Clara, California.

Founded: 1946, as part of the All-America Football Conference; joined the NFL in 1950 as part of the league merger.
Home field: Monster Park (1971 - present) (formerly named Candlestick Park (1959-1995), 3Com Park (1995-2002), San Francisco Stadium at Candlestick Point (2002-2004))
Previous home field: Kezar Stadium (1946 - 1970).
Ownership: Denise DeBartolo York, John York, The DeBartolo Corporation
General Manager: Scot McCloughan (2005-), officially "VP of Player Personnel"
Head coach: Mike Nolan (2005-)
Uniform colors: Cardinal Red and 49ers Gold, Black trim. Home uniforms: Gold pants and red jerseys. Road uniforms: Gold pants and white jerseys.
Helmet design: Metallic Gold helmet with intertwined "SF" in white on red oval with gold and black trim. Black-red-black helmet striping. Red facemask.
League championships won: Super Bowls XVI, XIX, XXIII, XXIV, XXIX. Have never lost a Super Bowl. Team with the most Super Bowl wins without a loss.

Franchise history

The San Francisco 49ers have the distinction of being the first major-league professional sports franchise on the West Coast. The 49ers entered professional football in 1946 and matured, nationally and locally, when the club was granted a National League franchise in 1950.

The team earned its name from the surge of goldminers to the San Francisco area during 1849, thus the nickname the San Francisco 49ers. It is the only name the team has been affiliated with and San Francisco is the only city in which it has resided.

The 49ers won five Super Bowls, four in the 1980s, and are considered The Team of the Eighties (the team had never won an NFL or Super Bowl championship prior, and had never even won a division title until 1970). They won XVI, XIX, XXIII, XXIV, and XXIX. During that decade, the team neglected to make the playoffs only twice — in 1980, and again in the strike-shortened 1982 season which saw them go 0-5 at home and 3-1 on the road — the only time in NFL history that a team went winless at home while winning more than half its away games in the same season.

The team was led in its turnaround from late 1970s doormat by new owner Eddie DeBartolo and head coach Bill Walsh. The former coach of Stanford University made excellent draft picks, picked up key free agents or players released by other teams and is known as the creator of the 'West Coast offense'. During their first Super Bowl run the team was known for its short passing game and the play making ability of young quarterback Joe Montana. Later they became dominant in all aspects of the game. Some other famous 49ers include Steve Young, Ronnie Lott, Dwight Clark, Jerry Rice, Roger Craig, Fred Dean, Eric Wright, Dwight Hicks, Deion Sanders, and Ricky Watters. There are many others as the team has had a policy of releasing star players a year too early rather than a year too late. That has led to some of their stars finishing up their careers with other teams.

In the late 1990s Eddie DeBartolo was involved in a corruption investigation regarding Louisiana Governor Edwin Edwards and one of his Mississippi riverboat casinos. DeBartolo later pleaded guilty to a failure to report a felony charge. As a part of the fallout, he transferred controlling interest in the team to his sister and brother-in-law, Denise and John York.

In 2002 they produced the second greatest comeback in NFL playoff history by coming back from a 24 point deficit (38-14) and winning 39-38 against the New York Giants behind amazing games by then 49ers Jeff Garcia and Terrell Owens. They lost their subsequent game to the eventual Super Bowl Champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers. This would be, to date, the last post-season appearance for the 49ers. Following the season, Steve Mariucci, the coach, was fired and replaced by Dennis Erickson.

The period since the 2001 season has been disastrous for San Francisco, hampered by injuries and poor defense. Although they finished the 2003 season with a losing record of 7-9, Erickson was retained as coach for the 2004 season.

On September 26, 2004, the Niners were shut out 34-0 by the Seattle Seahawks, their first such loss in 420 regular season and 36 playoff games, a league record. The last shutout had been 27 years ago in 1977 — they were defeated 7-0 by Atlanta at what was then known as Candlestick Park. The 49ers had several chances to score in the fourth quarter, but an interception and a fumble recovery sealed their fate in this game.

During the 2004 season, rumors that the Yorks might sell the team began spreading. Larry Ellison and former quarterback Steve Young have been the names most commonly rumored as potential buyers. The 49ers would finish that season with a record of 2-14, their second consecutive losing season (and finishing last in the NFC West for the first time since 1979, ending what had been the NFL's longest active streak for not finishing in last place in a division), with the worst record in the NFL for the season, which secured them the first crack at the first round pick in the spring NFL draft, and also resulted in the firing of head coach Erickson and GM Terry Donahue. After an extensive coaching search, the 49ers announced the hiring of Mike Nolan, former defensive coordinator of the Baltimore Ravens as their head coach to lead the team into the 2005 season. He is the son of former 49ers coach Dick Nolan, who led the team to three consecutive playoff appearances in the early 1970's. In his inaugural draft as head coach, Mike Nolan selected with the first pick of the draft quarterback Alex Smith of the University of Utah. It was a pick predicted by many, though some had the 49ers selecting local product Aaron Rodgers of the University of California, Berkeley. Expectations are hopeful that the new coach and quarterback tandem will bring renewed success to a faltering franchise.

On May 31, 2005, it became public knowledge that a controversial video production, intended to be viewed by the players only, had been made the previous August under the supervision of the team's public relations director, Kirk Reynolds, who also appeared prominently in it. The video contained unflattering stereotypical characterizations of numerous ethnic and other groups, including Chinese-Americans, lesbians, strippers and homeless persons — and worse yet, was meant to be used for "sensitivity training" purposes. The revelation led to Reynolds being fired from his position, and sparked harsh condemnation of the club from the local media, who instantly dubbed the scandal "Videogate." Ironically, the story broke on the same day that the identity of "Deep Throat" from the Watergate scandal was made public (the 49ers story receiving priority over it in the San Francisco Chronicle) — and even more ironically, an anonymous source (widely thought to be recently-fired 49ers general manager Terry Donahue) "leaked" the story by sending a copy of the video to the media.

Players of note

Pro Football Hall of Famers

Current players




Wide Receivers

Tight ends




Defensive Ends

Defensive Tackles






Retired numbers

Not to be forgotten

External links

The National Football League
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NFL playoffs | AFC Championship Game | NFC Championship Game | The Super Bowl
NFL on television | The Pro Bowl | NFLPA | AFL | AFL-NFL Merger | NFL Europe | Defunct NFL teams

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