4 former 49ers who need to be in Pro Football Hall of Fame
By Peter Panacy
The 49ers have had their fair share of snubs over the years, but these four former players need to be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
During their annual State of the Franchise event for 2021, the San Francisco 49ers announced two of their legendary defenders, defensive lineman Bryant Young and linebacker Patrick Willis, would be inducted into the team’s own Hall of Fame.
Quite a lofty accomplishment when one thinks of the many legends who’ve donned the red and gold over the years.
Yet there’s an argument for both of those players to be ranked higher, not just as Niners legends and all-time greats, but in the annals of pro football itself.
Each year, there’s an argument for at least one former San Francisco great to be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio. But the calls for some other legendary greats to eventually don the gold jacket could get louder and should eventually include these four all-time players.
49ers Player No. 4: Defensive Tackle Bryant Young
OK, so there might be a safe argument suggesting, while great with the 49ers, was Young truly an all-time Hall of Fame-worthy great?
After all, Young reached the Pro Bowl only four times and was a first-team All-Pro just once, 1996, and the usual trajectory for Canton-bound defenders is to get six or seven Pro Bowl nods over their careers.
Perhaps the biggest thing holding Young back from a Hall of Fame enshrinement is the fact he never crested that magical 100-sack plateau, yet his 89.5 quarterback-takedowns remains a franchise all-time high since sacks were made a statistic.
Even though he only recorded double-digit sacks twice during his storied 14-year career.
Yet if there’s an argument to be made for B.Y. getting into the hall, it should be his inclusion on the All-1990s Hall of Fame team, which is about as good an endorsement as any for a player being one of the most dominant of his era.