No. 9: Tight End Ken MacAfee
Drafted by the San Francisco 49ers in the first round (seventh overall) of the 1978 NFL Draft
The 49ers of the late 1970s were bad. And the team needed playmakers to impact the offense.
This is what San Francisco was hoping for when the team selected Notre Dame tight end Ken MacAfee seventh overall in the 1978 NFL Draft.
The problem was MacAfee wasn’t able to contribute much offensively.
Over his first two seasons with the Niners, MacAfee managed just 46 catches for 471 yards and five touchdowns — hardly the stat line for an offensive player from a top-10 selection.
San Francisco suggested to MacAfee he move to the guard position.
But MacAfee refused and elected to retire from football in 1980. He later went on to pursue a life in dentistry. So kudos to him for helping there, but to lose out on a top-10 selection like that sure hurt.
Fortunately, it was overlooked by the Niners’ eventual success only a few short years later.