San Francisco 49ers: Top 20 games in franchise history

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1980 Week 16 Overtime Win Over New Orleans Saints

The New Orleans Saints came to Candlestick with a record of 0-14 and looking like an easy win for Bill Walsh’s 49ers in his second season as head coach.

A loss to the pitiful Saints would crush team morale as the 49ers headed into the offseason.

The Saints immediately began to embarrass the 49ers, taking a 35-7 lead at halftime. Walsh, recognizing that there was little to say to his team, simply asked the players to have some respect.

The 49ers responded came out of halftime and scored 28 unanswered points to tie the game before heading into overtime and eventually winning on a 36-yard field goal from kicker Ray Wersching.

Quarterback Joe Montana led the second-half comeback with two passing touchdowns and one rushing touchdown. Montana, drafted out of Notre Dame in the third round of the 1979 NFL draft, had officially introduced himself as the future at quarterback for the 49ers.

The team went on to win the Super Bowl in the following season and the overtime victory against the Saints was seen as the beginning of the impressive run from Walsh, Montana and the 49ers.

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