Biggest studs, duds from 49ers Week 17 win over Texans

Trey Lance #5 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
Trey Lance #5 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images) /
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Trey Lance, San Francisco 49ers
San Francisco 49ers quarterback Trey Lance (5) Mandatory Credit: Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports /

23. 42. Final. 7. 10

The 49ers got off to a slow start in Week 17 against the Texans, but Trey Lance turned a key page and helped propel the Niners to a 23-7 victory.

San Francisco 49ers rookie quarterback Trey Lance‘s second-ever NFL start went a lot of ways how someone might have thought it would have gone.

Over the first two quarters or so in Week 17 against the Houston Texans, Lance looked like a completely inexperienced first-year player, which he is. But with the Niners putting together a solid two-minute drive just before halftime, Lance finally got himself into rhythm.

All the while showing the physical gifts and talents that convinced San Francisco to use the No. 3 overall NFL Draft pick on him last spring.

Lance, assisted by a stout pass-rushing defense and strong running game, then cruised to the 23-7 victory to improve to 9-7, providing a much-needed stop for head coach Kyle Shanahan’s squad to securing a playoff berth this season.

Let’s take a look at some of Week 17’s biggest winners and losers from the game.

49ers Stud: Quarterback Trey Lance

Lance didn’t start off perfectly. And while his first-half numbers seemed OK — 10-of-13 for 105 yards — his underthrown pass intended for tight end George Kittle was one of those he’d prefer to have back.

Luckily for Lance and Co., that was essentially the only major gaffe that came back to haunt the 49ers.

The Texans managed a touchdown off that turnover, but Lance responded with a nifty rollout touchdown pass to running back Elijah Mitchell, then the rookie quarterback hit wide receiver Deebo Samuel for a nifty 45-yard catch-and-run touchdown early in the fourth quarter:

Two things on that touchdown. For starters, it’s an awfully pretty play. On top of that, the deep-threat element is something the Niners have largely lacked with the quarterback for whom Lance was filling in during the game, Jimmy Garoppolo.

Overall, Lance went 16-of-23 for 249 yards, two passing touchdowns against the interception, all for a 116.0 passer rating, notching his first win as a quarterback in the process.

Not perfect, but it was certainly impressive enough an effort from the first-year pro.