What didn’t work for Trey Lance, 49ers
Good news can wait. Bad news can’t. Let’s start with the latter.
Trey Lance’s final line is pretty indicative of his total effort: 15-of-29 for 192 yards, zero touchdowns against an interception and a passer rating of 58.4.
There were multiple moments when Lance could have hit a hot-read target, particularly when pressured en route to two sacks and seven quarterback hits. And even though he can’t always rely on his legs to bail him out, Lance could have done two different things on his interception on the 49ers’ opening drive, which resulted in an interception by Cardinals safety Budda Baker:
Lance had at least 15 yards of open real estate in front of him. And while targeting wide receiver Travis Benjamin was the right read, the sailed throw is something that’ll haunt him in this situation.
More finesse, less zip. That was a storyline during the preseason for Lance, too.
That was only one play, however, and there was another near-score for Lance and the Niners where a small mistake turned into a goal-line stop instead of six points:
You can debate whether or not Lance got a part of the ball over the goal line. The officials didn’t think so, and no challenge was issued. But, unlike a try on a 3rd- or 4th-and-short in the middle of the field, all Lance needed to do was either go high with the ball. Or, what former New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees used to do so well, hold the ball over the goal line before bringing it back.
That would have counted for a touchdown.
So would have hitting fullback Kyle Juszczyk, who released and was wide open on the play.
Overall, the general consensus on Lance’s negative efforts are probably going to be consistent with the theme surrounding him dating back to the preseason: He’s raw, and the game still moves too fast for him.
That said, second-team and scout-team reps during practices aren’t going to help speed those things up much either. He needs to play more to work out these kinks.