I’ve never understood the notion that 49ers quarterback Trey Lance is somehow not ready to take control of San Francisco’s offense as he enters his second season in the Bay Area. Since Lance didn’t overtake incumbent starter, QB Jimmy Garoppolo, last year, many assumed Lance simply isn’t very good.
He’s from a small school, which probably led many to doubt Lance’s skill. But other than that and his lack of playing time, there’s not much to go on for the “Lance isn’t ready” crowd.
Now, there’s even less. 49ers tight end George Kittle, as he appeared on the Pat McAfee Show to chat about his Tight End University summit, revealed that Lance looks sensational at practice and is a completely different player than he was a season ago at this time.
“Trey has taken, in my opinion, big steps forward,” Kittle said. “If you compared him to last year’s OTAs, I think he’s two different players … all he needs is reps. If there’s growing pains, there’s growing pains.”
Here’s more of Kittle’s commentary. He provides a ton of great insight into the team, including the presumed awkwardness surrounding the 49ers’ QB situation. He also points out that he doesn’t know who the 49ers starting quarterback will be, despite some mind-boggling play from Lance (because it’s coach Kyle Shanahan’s job to decide).
Just like Kittle, I can’t claim to know how this QB situation is going to play out. But also just like Kittle, I am a believer in Lance. The 49ers played it cool when no other team showed express interest in Garoppolo as the offseason QB carousel was in full swing and they couldn’t trade him. The 49ers brass says he could still be on the team this season.
But somehow, someway, I expect Lance to be the No. 1 signal-caller in San Francisco in 2022. And if Kittle’s insight is any indication, we should all expect some mind-boggling plays from the 49ers’ young gun, Trey Lance, over the course of the upcoming campaign.
EXTRA: Kittle was also talking about Lance because he invited Lance to attend the TE University summit and be one of the NFL quarterbacks to throw passes to the various pros in attendance.