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42 days until 49ers kickoff: Who wore it best? Who wears it now?

The San Francisco 49ers season starts in 42 days. We take a look at jersey No. 42, worn by the greatest safety of all time.

Andrew H. Walker/Getty Images

The San Francisco 49ers kick off the 2015 NFL regular season on Monday Night Football, on September 14. That game. means San Francisco is now a mere 42 days away from kicking off its 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: S Ronnie Lott (1981-1990)

Yea, this was not going to be difficult considering the jersey was retired in 2003. I will say, it is interesting to note that Leo Nomellini began his career wearing No. 42. Leo the Lion wore the jersey his first two seasons, earning a spot on two Pro Bowl teams, along with an All Pro nod. Nomellini switched to No. 73 after his second season.

There was never any doubt on this one. Lott spent ten years with the 49ers, arriving as the 8th overall pick of the 1981 NFL Draft. That draft saw the 49ers select Lott, Eric Wright and Carlton Williamson, who all quickly moved into the starting lineup. Lott started out his career as a cornerback, spending four and a half seasons at the position. In 1985 he started the transition to free safety, where he would spend the rest of his time with the 49ers.

Lott was named first team All-Pro five times with the 49ers, including his rookie season. While he did finish his career with two seasons in Oakland, and two more with the Jets, he'll always be remembered with the 49ers as one of the hardest hitting, toughest safeties of all time.