Greatest 49ers drafted all-time Round No. 5: S Merton Hanks
Free safety Merton Hanks locked down his side of the field for eight consecutive seasons with San Francisco. He played heads-up and hard-nosed throughout his tenure intercepting 33 passes and scoring six total touchdowns.
Most of all, he was known for his crazy dances and post-play celebrations.
On the field, he wasn’t just a brilliant mind on defense. Hanks brought versatility to the field in the form of special teams as well. He played punt returner in college and throughout his career.
Hanks also played on that remarkably talented team in the 1990s that won Super Bowl 29 in commanding fashion.
The front seven was comprised of players who were at the top of their game, but a secondary of Hanks, Tim McDonald, Eric Davis, and “Primetime” Deion Sanders was what finally propelled the organization passed the defending-champion Cowboys.
Hanks was an undeniable leader, a resident hype man and one of the major reasons the Niners were able to capture that elusive fifth Lombardi Trophy.
Honorable Mentions: George Kittle