The San Francisco 49ers kick off the 2015 NFL regular season on Monday Night Football, on September 14. That game is now a mere 80 days away from kicking off their 2015 regular season. In the spirit of that approaching date, I thought I would steal this idea from our Oakland Raiders site.
Who wore it best: WR Jerry Rice (1985-2000)
So yea, this could probably be a pretty short post! The greatest wide receiver in NFL history sported No. 80, and it will not be worn again by a member of the 49ers. Rice set every notable receiving record there is, and many of his career records may never be reached. Here is a rundown of some of the more notable stats:
- 1,549 receptions - He has 224 more than Tony Gonzalez, who ranks second. Reggie Wayne's 1,070 receptions is the most among active players
- 22,895 receiving yards - He has 6,961 more than Terrell Owens, who ranks second. Reggie Wayne's 14,345 receiving yards is the most among active players
- 197 receiving touchdowns - He has 41 more than Randy Moss, who ranks second. Antonio Gates's 99 receiving touchdowns is the most among active players
- 208 total touchdowns - He has 33 more than Emmitt Smith, who ranks second. Antonio Gates's 99 total touchdowns is the most among active players
Since the 49ers have retired the No. 80, I thought I'd take a look at the best players to wear the jersey, both in 49ers history, and across the league. In San Francisco, defensive lineman Stan Hindman and defensive back Jerry Mertens are the highest in weighted approximate value at Pro Football Reference. There are a variety of metrics we can use, but I just used that for simplicity since PFR also provides me with the rundown of who wore what jersey.
It is not exactly a surprise that Rice is the NFL leader in weighted AV among players who wore No. 80. Peyton Manning is the only player to rank ahead of him in the category. Among No. 80s, the five players behind Rice are Steve Largent, Rod Smith, James Lofton, Cris Carter and Isaac Bruce. All great wide receivers, but they're not the GOAT!