A month ago, the NFL announced a strategic partnership with YouTube that would include the league uploading the full cut of the three “greatest games” in each franchise’s history. The league did not clarify at the time how they would choose the games, but we now have an answer.
The league announced a list of five finalists for each team and provided a poll on the respective Facebook pages. I have embedded the 49ers poll down below, and if you want to vote for other teams, click here. The top three vote-getters will be uploaded in full to YouTube.
The poll asks for “the most memorable game” in franchise history, and these five are certainly strong options. I would have probably put the 49ers-Saints 2012 playoff game over the Super Bowl win over the Dolphins, but considering I was only six then and don’t remember much from the game, I get why others will disagree.
For now though, here are some quick thoughts on the existing options.
49ers vs. Cowboys, NFC Title game, January 10, 1982 (boxscore)
The Catch. Pretty simple. NFL Network has broadcast the original telecast a few times in recent years. One could reasonably call this the biggest game in franchise history
49ers vs. Dolphins, Super Bowl XIX, January 20, 1985 (boxscore)
This was the 49ers second Super Bowl win, capping off a 15-1 season. This one was notable because Joe Montana and the 49ers had their way with Dan Marino and the dominant Miami Dolphins offense.
49ers vs. Bengals, Super Bowl XXIII, January 22, 1989 (boxscore)
Joe Montana-to-John Taylor, preceded by Montana pointing out John Candy in the crowd. I’m guessing Sam Wyche will never get over using a prevent defense on that final drive.
49ers vs. Chargers, Super Bowl XXIX, January 29, 1995 (boxscore)
The 49ers last Super Bowl victory. The NFC title game was effectively the Super Bowl this year, as the 49ers steamrolled the Chargers. Steve Young got the proverbial monkey off his back, putting together a record-setting passing performance.
49ers vs. Packers, Wild card round, January 3, 1999 (boxscore)
The Catch II. This was a wild one, capped by Terrell Owens making a game-winning catch as the 49ers finally got past the Green Bay Packers. TO’s catch was all the more notable as he had a rough day leading up to the touchdown. And that final drive was a thing to behold (even if Jerry Rice did fumble).