10 greatest 49ers one-hit wonders in franchise history

Chris Borland #50 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)
Chris Borland #50 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images) /
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The 49ers have had plenty of standout players over their history, yet a few made a lone single-season splash before either disappearing or going elsewhere.

Rolling Stone magazine lists the Norweigan band A-ha’s hit single, “Take On Me,” as the No. 1 one-hit wonder of all time in music.

You might be humming the tune right now.

But what if we explored this sort of thing when it comes to the NFL? More specifically, who might we classify as some of the biggest one-hit wonders in San Francisco 49ers history?

The Niners have their share of all-time greats. No one is questioning that. There are also plenty of lists out there about San Francisco’s most underperforming and disappointing players of all time, too.

How about the players who flashed only for a single season, though? What about them?

Whether it’s good or bad, the 49ers have had their fair share of one-hit wonder players over the years, too, so let’s give them some credit and break down the 10 Niners who made such a brief splash and then either vanished off the radar or took their talents elsewhere.

49ers one-hit wonder No. 10: Linebacker Chris Borland (2014)

A fan doesn’t have to go too far back in time to remember a serious one-hit wonder in San Francisco’s third-round NFL Draft pick from 2014, former Wisconsin linebacker Chris Borland.

The undersized backer made a name for himself amid injuries to All-Pro linebacker NaVorro Bowman suffered during the previous NFC Championship game in that loss to the Seattle Seahawks.

And while the 2014 49ers were without Bowman’s services for the entirety of that year, Borland subsequently ended up leading the defense with 108 tackles and finished fourth in voting for Defensive Rookie of the Year that season.

Known for his tenacity and being around the ball all the time, Borland surprised everyone when he shockingly elected to retire after his rookie season, citing concerns about head trauma as a key reason why he called it quits.

Paired with the mass exodus of talent the team had entering 2015, Borland’s departure sure stung a lot.