4 challenges Trey Lance will face vs. Rams (if 49ers start him)

Trey Lance #5 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images)
Trey Lance #5 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images) /
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Aaron Donald, Los Angeles Rams, San Francisco 49ers
Los Angeles Rams defensive end Aaron Donald (99) Mandatory Credit: Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports /

No. 1: Aaron Donald is a pretty good player

There are few defensive players around the league who can take over a game in its entirely, yet the Rams have one in perennial first-team All-Pro defensive tackle Aaron Donald.

To no one’s surprise, Donald leads the Rams with 12.5 sacks but does so much more to open up chances for players like EDGE Leonard Floyd and his 9.5 sacks, while also forcing opposing quarterbacks to rush their decision-making process, often leading to other beneficial mistakes in favor of LA.

Sure, San Francisco might have negated Donald to a small extent over the past couple of seasons, which is probably a partial explanation why Kyle Shanahan’s team has won five games in a row versus its NFC West rivals going into Week 18.

Still, and despite whatever fans may say about right guard Daniel Brunskill having his twice-a-year standout games versus Donald in the trenches, there’s no getting around the fact Donald’s 12.5 sacks over 14 total games against the 49ers is the most out of all the teams he’s faced in his Hall of Fame-caliber career.

How will Trey Lance respond to that?

No quarterback likes quick interior pressure, and Donald brings that. Lance, despite showing improvement against the pass rush in Week 17, will have an entirely new level of pressure versus Donald and a formidable Los Angeles defensive front.

That’ll be Lance’s toughest challenge to date when both teams square off in Week 18 at SoFI Stadium.

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