49ers receiving calls to trade Trey Lance isn’t surprising

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) /

According to NFL Network, the 49ers are getting calls about trading Trey Lance since Brock Purdy remains projected to be the Niners’ starter.

The San Francisco 49ers’ current situation with quarterback Trey Lance remains one of perspective.

On one hand, the Niners have a good problem on their hands: too many starting-caliber quarterbacks. Lance is there, and so is second-year pro Brock Purdy. Even the recently acquired Sam Darnold can be put into the discussion to start Week 1.

On the other, it’s a conundrum. San Francisco invested so much in acquiring Lance back in 2021 that giving up on him after essentially two forgotten years would be a stain on the front office no matter what. That said, Purdy is still injured after undergoing offseason elbow surgery and might not be ready by Week 1.

That’d leave Lance and Darnold in the fray, at least in theory, unless the 49ers finally decide to cut bait and trade away the former.

According to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, the Niners haven’t decided that yet. But other teams are pressing them to make a decision.

NFL Network reports the 49ers are receiving trade inquiries about Trey Lance

On Wednesday, Rapoport shared a few tidbits about Lance’s current situation and his potential future, which is of notable interest in the days leading up to the 2023 NFL Draft.

Rapoport reported that San Francisco is receiving calls from “several teams” who understand all too well that Purdy, despite being injured, is likely the go-to option for head coach Kyle Shanahan moving forward.

Not Lance. And that’s prompting trade talk.

Rapoport also added that “no trade is imminent” on the thread and pointed out how the 49ers would want to ensure Purdy’s recovery is moving on well before making any blockbuster decision.

But would they? That leads us back to the conundrum.

Is this news? Would 49ers actually trade Trey Lance now?

Shanahan and general manager John Lynch have never been shy about trying to upgrade or improve the team at any possible point, sometimes joking about how they’d “trade each other” if the compensation was good enough.

From a financial standpoint, both Lance and Purdy account for just a shade over $10 million in cap hit this season, according to Over the Cap, while Darnold is set to make up to $4.5 million. So, from that vantage point, the Niners can afford to keep all three if they wanted to. In light of Purdy’s recovery and the serious injuries San Francisco suffered at the position last season, Lynch and Shanahan might elect to go this route instead of trading Lance.

That said, should the 49ers get a trade package for Lance that they like, it might be too hard to say “no,” especially if they’ve all but cemented Purdy in as the starter moving forward.

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One report from Yahoo! Sports’ Charles Robinson suggested the Niners would accept a trade for Lance if the return compensation was nothing more than a second-round pick.

Perhaps teams are currently calling San Francisco and offering that. But, knowing there are multiple inquiries, Lynch and Shanahan might be waiting to see how lucrative a bidding war might get. That would be wise.

Of course, it might also be wise to retain their asset in Lance and let him finally compete for that starting job, especially with Purdy out of the picture for the time being.

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