Season Grade: A+
Goldson is arguably the best defensive player that the University of Washington has graduated into the NFL. After playing for three years at UW, the 49ers selected Goldson with the 126th pick of the 2007 NFL draft.
After backing up Mark Roman his first two years in the league, he was named the starter at free safety for the 49ers in 2009. In his first full season, he made as many interceptions as he had in his career at UW, cementing him as a premier safety.
However, he didn’t earn his first Pro Bowl selection until 2011, when he managed to pick off six passes in only 14 games while making 67 tackles. After racking up another 69 tackles and three interceptions this past season, Goldson was named to the Pro Bowl for the second time in as many years, but he was unable to play because his team was playing for the championship the next weekend.
With Goldson roaming the secondary, the 49ers defense became one of the most feared in the league, leading them to their first Super Bowl appearance since 1994.
Now regarded as one of the best safeties in football, Goldson is expected to be a Pro Bowler year in and year out, just as the team is now expected to be Super Bowl contenders year in and year out.