49ers to honor Dwight Clark with statue of ‘The Catch’

Former NFL tight end Dwight Clark is introduced to a standing ovation during the fourth inning between the San Francisco Giants and the San Diego Padres during this 2017 file photo.Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

The 49ers will honor the memory of former wide receiver Dwight Clark in a variety of ways, the team announced Wednesday.

The San Francisco 49ers will unveil two statues depicting "The Catch" outside of Levi's Stadium during the team's game against the Los Angeles Rams on Oct. 21. "The Catch" was the signature moment of Clark's career, as he reeled in the winning touchdown pass from Joe Montana in the 1981 NFL Championship Game against the Dallas Cowboys.

Per the 49ers, the "350-pound statues of Dwight Clark and Joe Montana will be placed exactly 23 yards apart, just as the two 49ers were during the famous play. The representation of Clark, with his hands outstretched, will extend 11 feet in the air."

For the game against the Rams, the 49ers also will place a painted "87" -- Clark's jersey number -- in the north end zone, as a means to honor the approximate location of "The Catch."

In addition, 49ers will wear "87" helmet decals to commemorate Clark, who passed away on June 4 after a battle with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) at the age of 61.

"Almost three decades ago, Dwight Clark's miraculous catch launched the San Francisco 49ers into an era of excellence," 49ers CEO Jed York said. "Since that time, he has served as an inspirational figure to citizens of the Bay Area and beyond. Dwight has meant so much to so many and it is only fitting that our organization continues to carry on his wonderful legacy.

"The 2018 season provides us a tremendous opportunity to celebrate the life of a very special man, while also raising awareness for the Golden Heart Fund, which was so dear to his heart. Dwight lived his life with great compassion for others, and we want to honor that legacy by raising funds to support his 49ers brothers."

Clark reeled in 506 passes for 6,750 yards and 48 touchdowns during his career with the 49ers. His receiving yards rank third in franchise history behind Jerry Rice and Terrell Owens.

The 49ers retired Clark's No. 87 in 1988.

Following his playing days, Clark became a front office executive (1989-98), was a part of three more Super Bowl victories and later moved into a consultant role for the Edward J. DeBartolo Sr. 49ers Hall of Fame.

Clark later served as a team executive for the 49ers, and he was the general manager and director of football operations for the Cleveland Browns from 1999 to 2002.