The San Francisco 49ers were one of the greatest teams in modern football and arguably the best team of the 1980s. With all their accomplishments, including multiple Super Bowl victories, it’s no wonder they also became for a time the most popular team in the league. However, none of this could have happened if they hadn’t used their third-round pick in the 1979 NFL Draft to select University of Notre Dame quarterback Joe Montana.
Joe Montana was an exceptional football player and played perhaps the biggest role in bringing the San Francisco franchise back from the bottom tier of the NFL to the ranks of all-time great teams. He accomplished a lot during his career, and here are five interesting facts about 49ers great Joe Montana.
#1 – The first of many. The first touchdown Joe Montana would throw in the NFL was a 16-yard pass to Bob Bruer in the fourth quarter of a 38-28 loss to the Denver Broncos in 1979. This was the only touchdown he threw during his rookie season, since it wasn’t until 1980 that he would become a starter.
#2 – No player would catch more touchdown passes from Joe Montana than Jerry Rice. He and his quarterback connected 55 times for scores during their time together.
#3: Joe Montana threw more touchdown passes against the Atlanta Falcons than against any other team in the NFL. Over his career, he threw 38 touchdown passes against Atlanta, just topping the 37 he threw against the Los Angeles Rams.
#4 – He threw for more touchdowns in the second quarter than in any other quarter of the game. His 89 touchdowns in the second quarter dwarf the 68 he threw in the fourth quarter, the 62 he threw in the first quarter and the 54 he threw in the third quarter.
#5 – Davis gets turned on. The last regular season touchdown pass Joe Montana would throw came in the 1994 season game. It was a 19-9 victory over the Raiders and the pass was thrown in the first quarter, carried 47 yards and was caught by Chiefs wide receiver Willie Davis. The last touchdown pass Montana threw as a 49er came two years earlier and was an eight-yarder to running back Amp Lee.