Trey Lance was drafted into a good situation in San Francisco. Here’s why the second-year quarterback for the 49ers must take advantage.
There has been a lot of talk surrounding backup quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo in recent days. After being open to trading the veteran QB during the offseason, Garoppolo’s market has fallen flat, and San Franciso ultimately settled with renegotiating his contract to keep him around for the 2022 season.
While Garoppolo has found success with the 49ers, Trey Lance was drafted to be the future of the team and he will take over as the starting quarterback this year. Prior to the 2021 NFL Draft, John Lynch and Kyle Shanahan made the decision to move from pick twelve all the way up to the third pick to make sure they landed the North Dakota State quarterback. This didn’t come without a steep price.
So far, things haven’t exactly gone according to plans for San Francisco. Lance was raw as a rookie, so it wasn’t surprising to see him sit and learn behind Garoppolo to begin his NFL career. However, his second summer with the team wasn’t quite what we were hoping for. The young quarterback is now entering a favorable situation in which he must be able to capitalize.
Trey Lance must capitalize on opportunity with 49ers
There aren’t many quarterbacks who are afforded such a favorable opportunity early in their NFL careers, but Trey Lance is one of them. Not only did he land with a great franchise, but he also is entering a situation with a brilliant offensive-minded head coach, a fantastic offensive line, and excellent skill players around him.
The same cannot be said for many other young quarterbacks recently entering the league. Take Trevor Lawrence, for example. After being the first-overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft, Lawrence has already gone through a head coaching change and has witnessed significant roster turnover on the offensive side of the ball early in his career.
The 2021 draft was considered to be one of the best in years at the quarterback position. When compared to the other young signal-callers selected in the first round last season, it’s hard to argue that any of them entered a situation better than Lance. In his first season, he got to sit and learn the playbook behind a quality veteran in Garoppolo instead of being thrown to the wolves. Theoretically, he should be poised for a big season in his first year as a starter.
Lance won’t be doing it alone either. Kyle Shanahan is as good as any head coach in the NFL at helping out his quarterback with a solid rushing attack and receivers who can work their magic in space after the catch. Lance probably won’t be asked to take over games often in 2022, but he will be required to make some plays in a crowded NFC West division.
The second-year quarterback has been a bit more up and down this summer than fans would have hoped for, and his sample size during the 2022 preseason was very small (just 141 yards on 16 attempts, via CBS Sports). He needs to get up to speed quickly.
Trey Lance is entering a very favorable situation and the organization is going to want to capitalize on a talented roster and a quarterback on a rookie contract. Big things are expected from Lance in his first season as a starter, and he needs to prove that he can deliver.