Biggest winners, losers from 49ers trade of Trey Lance to Cowboys

It'll be interesting to see if Trey Lance winds up being a winner or a loser after being traded to Dallas.
San Francisco 49ers quarterback Trey Lance (L) and head coach Kyle Shanahan (R)
San Francisco 49ers quarterback Trey Lance (L) and head coach Kyle Shanahan (R) / Thearon W. Henderson/GettyImages
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Trey Lance, Brock Purdy
San Francisco 49ers v Seattle Seahawks / Michael Zagaris/GettyImages

Winner: 49ers quarterback Brock Purdy

Brock Purdy, who came from being the final pick of the 2021 draft and turned into an almost overnight sensation as San Francisco's third starter late last year and into the playoffs, no longer has to worry about another challenging him for the starting job anytime soon.

Despite Trey Lance being the high-profile draft pick, it was clear all offseason the 49ers were fully invested in Purdy as their starter. John Lynch and Kyle Shanahan effectively both endorsed Purdy as the starter at multiple points despite the fact the quarterback was coming off offseason elbow surgery.

Lance was merely competing with fellow former third-overall draftee, Sam Darnold, for the No. 2 quarterback spot, a competition he ultimately lost and one that prompted the subsequent trade to the Cowboys.

That said, Purdy remains one of those X-factors that'll help determine the severity of the Lance debacle.

If Purdy winds up being the "real deal," as Shanahan has said, the failed Lance experiment stings a lot less.

But if Purdy looks more like a final NFL Draft pick out of Round 7, meaning last year was more of an anomaly than anything else, punting on Lance will be significantly more disastrous than it already is.