No. 8: Cedrick Hardman
49ers Tenure: 1970 – 1979
Pro Bowl Selections: 2
The ninth overall pick in the 1970 draft, defensive end Cedrick Hardman was a consistent starter for nine seasons in the 1970s.
Hardman was selected to two Pro Bowls, in 1971 and 1975, and named to two All-Pro teams, second team in 1971 and first team in 1975. It was in his second season when Hardman burst on the scene, unofficially notching 18.0 sacks in 1971, according to 49ers’ records. That was the record until Aldon Smith came along and broke it in 2012.
He is also the unofficial franchise leader in sacks, with 112.5 in 171 games played. Sadly, part of Hardman’s career was hampered by numerous injuries. He missed stretches of the 1970, 1972, 1973, 1976 and 1979 seasons with injuries to his knee and fibula.
What’s remarkable though is that even with the sustained injuries, Hardman was able to carve himself a spot into 49ers’ legacy.