The 49ers have made a statement on the starting quarterback position: Trey Lance is the guy they believe can lead the franchise to its sixth Super Bowl championship. San Francisco paid a heavy price to jump from 12th overall to 3rd overall and pick the North Dakota State product in the 2021 NFL Draft.
Additionally, the 49ers have no first-round picks until 2024 and benched Jimmy Garoppolo, who brought them to Super Bowl LIV and the 2022 NFC Championship Game, in favor of Lance.
Ahead of the official start of the Lance era, NBC Sports Bay Area’s Matt Maiocco caught up with NBC Sports’ Peter King on the latest installment of ’49ers Talk’ to discuss what he’s seeing from the 22-year-old this preseason.
“He’s very confident,” King told Maiocco. “…From his conversation with me, I gather that he’s pretty good at shutting out the outside world.”
King also said he told Lance how different the NFL is when it comes to young quarterbacks. In the past, teams have been patient to ensure the player was ready when given the starting job.
Now teams put the player in as a rookie and quickly switch from quarterback after two or three years instead of waiting. Even as the NFL transitioned to that mindset, Lance told King he wasn’t worried about going into Year 1 as a starter.
“I basically told him that it’s so different from when I first started covering the NFL that if you don’t do well as a quarterback very early on, people are going to dump you,” King said.
“A lot of times, it ends up with the drumbeat drumming the quarterback out of town, and he’s like, ‘Hey, respect to you and the people who do your work. I just don’t care what you say and I can’t. All I care about is what my coaches say.’ “
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Lance looked good in his first NFL preseason game in the 49ers’ 28-21 win over the Green Bay Packers at Levi’s Stadium, including a deep pass to receiver Danny Gray that resulted in a 76-yard touchdown. The franchise expects this to be a sign of the upcoming 2022 season.
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