Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Five 49ers individual records that can fall in the near future

Jun 30, 2021 at 10:58 AM--

The San Francisco 49ers record book is filled with extraordinary achievements, some of which may never be matched (such as the many jaw-dropping records set by Jerry Rice). But there are a few notable marks that will eventually be broken, especially now that a 17-game schedule is on the way.

Let's take a look at five of them here. Four of them are regular season records, while the last one is a career accomplishment that could be in jeopardy of falling within a couple years.

* Passing yards, single season (Jeff Garcia, 4,278; 2000)

It seems like it's only a matter of time before this mark falls in Kyle Shanahan's offense. Jimmy Garoppolo came within shouting distance of Garcia's record when he threw for 3,978 yards in 2019, which is the fourth-highest single-season total in 49ers history. It might not be a safe assumption to expect this record to fall in 2021 given the uncertainty over whether or not Garoppolo will remain the starter for all 17 games over Trey Lance (or if Garoppolo will remain healthy), but perhaps Lance can give this number a run early in his career. Last year's 49ers quarterbacks (Garoppolo, Nick Mullens, C.J. Beathard) combined for 4,320 yards over the course of the season.

* Passing touchdowns, single season (Steve Young, 36; 1998)

This one might be a tad bit tougher to break than Garcia's yardage mark (the only 49ers quarterback since Garcia to come within 10 touchdowns of this number was Garoppolo with 27 in 2019), but it'll probably fall eventually. Like Garcia's record, Young's touchdowns mark seems very attainable in today's pass-happy 17-game era. Russell Wilson's 34 touchdowns was enough to lead the league in 2017, while Tom Brady and Lamar Jackson led the league with 36 in 2015 and 2019, respectively. But other than that, every NFL passing touchdown leader over the past ten years has connected on 40 or more.

* Rushing touchdowns, single season (10, shared by six players)

This is one of the more modest team records in the 49ers record book. Despite the terrific backs (and running quarterbacks) the 49ers have had over the years, no player has been able to top more than ten rushing touchdowns in a single regular season. The players sharing this mark are Frank Gore, Ricky Watters, Derek Loville, J.D. Smith, quarterback Billy Kilmer, and Pro Football Hall of Famer Joe Perry, who did it twice. Raheem Mostert came within shouting distance of this number in 2019 with a total of eight. Staying healthy and getting enough carries would seem to be the main obstacles for one of the team's current backs to set this record. Might one of them find himself in a position to do it this year?

* Rushing yards for a rookie (811, Vic Washington, 1971)

This is certainly a breakable record, it'll just require the right rookie in the right situation at the right time to do so. Maybe that rookie will be Trey Sermon this season. It's difficult to predict what will happen with the 49ers running backs in 2021, but with Jeff Wilson already out to start the season with a knee injury and Raheem Mostert battling injuries off and on in recent years, it's not a stretch to think Sermon could find himself getting the type of workload he'd need to push for this record.

* Receiving yards for a tight end, career (Vernon Davis, 5,640; 2006-2015)

This one seems certain to fall over the next two or three seasons, as long as George Kittle remains healthy enough to do it. Kittle stands at 3,579 yards after four years with the 49ers and is capable of putting up numbers at a rate that could eventually lead to Davis' mark getting blown out of the water. Kittle needed just 53 games to put up his current career stats, while Davis' numbers span 139 games in a 49ers uniform. Also eventually within reach for Kittle could be Davis' receptions mark of 441 (Kittle currently has 264), but it will take quite a bit longer for Kittle to catch Davis in touchdowns (Davis 55, Kittle 14).


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