Is Trey Lance a perfect fit in San Francisco with the 49ers? We believe so, and we think there’s a number of reasons as to why.
Finally, the football world has calmed down and people aren’t going berserk trying to guess who the San Francisco 49ers would be selecting with the third overall pick.
In case you’re living in a cave out in the wilderness, the pick was North Dakota State quarterback, Trey Lance.
Now, while some people may have believed the Niners could have gone in another direction with the third overall pick, I think everyone can agree they’re just happy it wasn’t Alabama quarterback Mac Jones, who instead was selected by the New England Patriots at No. 15 overall.
Most San Francisco fans feel the Lance selection will allow head coach Kyle Shanahan’s offense to go nuclear. It should be noted that while Lance is a raw prospect and will surely need some time to develop, his natural abilities give him the power to do absolutely everything and anything Shanahan wants to employ in his ultra-modern day offense.
Does this mean he is, at this moment, better than current signal-caller Jimmy Garoppolo?
Probably not. Though I think Lance will eventually surpass Jimmy G within the next year.
Shanahan still runs one of the most complex systems in football, and while Lance is surely the more talented of the two quarterbacks, Jimmy G has the advantage of being employed in this system for over three years now. So throwing a raw rookie out there to lead a team that has Super Bowl aspirations may not be the greatest of ideas, as even the greatest of quarterbacks need a little time to become acclimated to the NFL.
It seemed to work out this way for quarterback Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs, right?
Trey Lance gets an ideal landing spot with 49ers
Now, as for the fit between Trey Lance and the 49ers, there could not be a better one.
Lance was probably hoping he would have his name called by the Niners over any other team in the top 15 because he knows that, for both his legacy as well as his development as an NFL quarterback, there would be no better fit than San Francisco.
Now, why would this be the case?
Besides the fact the 49ers are one of the all-time great NFL franchises, known for keeping their teams competitive most of the time and employing capable people to run their front offices (for the most part), they are also one of the most stacked teams in the NFL today with a star-studded coaching staff capable of grooming Lance into one of the leagues most dynamic playmakers.
Lance will presumably be the Niners’ full-time starter by the 2022 season and will have a ton to work with when he does finally step in to be the head honcho. Not only will he have the luxury of being able to throw to an elite crop of wide receivers such as Deebo Samuel and Brandon Aiyuk, but he will also be lucky enough to have one of the league’s most explosive tight ends in George Kittle.
I don’t think any of the other rookie quarterbacks coming out of this year’s draft will even have a sliver of the talent around them as Lance will at the start of their careers, so I have to believe this is a situation rookie quarterbacks can only dream of.
Not to mention, the team also bolstered their offensive line by extending superstar left tackle Trent Williams this offseason, as well as picking up right tackle Mike McGlinchey’s fifth-year option, which keeps him around at least for another two seasons.
They also added two new faces, one being star center Alex Mack, who signed a three-year deal, and the second being a player the team spent a valuable day-two pick on the 2021 draft to select, offensive guard Aaron Banks.
Banks is actually one of the more underrated moves of the offseason, as the team has finally solidified the right guard position with one of the draft’s highly touted prospects.
The expectation is that Banks will win the job as soon as this season.
Player personnel aside, the fact Shanahan and general manager John Lynch traded two future first-round picks and a third-round pick to move up from No. 12 overall in this year’s draft to snag Lance tells you all you need to know about their feelings for Lance as a talent. It can be assured the Niners brass will do everything in their power to allow Lance to succeed in the NFL. Couple this with the fact Lance was touted as far and away the most athletic and most mentally gifted signal-callers in this draft will allow him to be utilized to the extent of his talents in San Francisco.
How 49ers can win with Trey Lance
Shanahan is known for creating offensive schemes that utilize trickery and misdirection through the air, as well as an aggressive run game, which literally highlights everything that Trey Lance is good at: being used as a dynamic playmaker.
While most would agree Jimmy G has been an all-around good player for this team, his lack of mobility and athletic prowess have sometimes limited the ability for Shanahan to employ offensive schemes he has in the past with quarterbacks such as Robert Griffin III, Kirk Cousins and Matt Ryan.
Now, while Cousins isn’t considered an elite athlete, his ability to navigate the pocket is definitely considered to be much more present than with Jimmy G, and he possesses an overall better arm than Garoppolo, too. As for RGIII, it can’t be denied that while injuries had hampered his career, he was as dynamic as they come in terms of moving around the field and creating plays with his legs, though he wasn’t as accurate as Garoppolo.
Lance, on the other hand, is a combination of all the good traits Shanahan has seen in his past QBs. The NDSU product has the athletic abilities to outrun and evade most opponents, an extremely strong (but slightly raw and a little less accurate) arm, and the mental dexterity to read opposing teams defenses on the fly, a trait Ryan is known for.
It shouldn’t be ignored this is the first quarterback Shanahan drafted with an elite pick in the top 12 since he has been appointed as the teams head coach, so it should be kept in mind that with this pick, Shanahan presumably picked a player he feels can do everything he wants to run as an offensive guru and will give him all the tools to do so.
All these different factors blend together to create a near-perfect situation for a budding quarterback prospect such as Lance. He will have the elite supporting cast (with presumably elite offensive line protection), the support and trust of his coaches, as well as the luxury of being able to operate in an offense that is tailor-made to bring out the best of him as an NFL quarterback.
I have to believe all five of the top quarterback prospects had some small part of them wishing they would somehow end up in San Francisco, but Trey Lance won the draw and will hopefully have an extremely successful career in the Bay Area.