The San Francisco 49ers Will Be Fine Without Trey Lance

Tony Avelar/AP

The San Francisco 49ers Will Be Fine Without Trey Lance


The San Francisco 49ers Will Be Fine Without Trey Lance


This past Sunday, the San Francisco 49ers lost their quarterback of the future in Trey Lance for the season after he suffered a broken ankle against the Seattle Seahawks. This injury is devastating for both Lance and the 49ers as San Francisco loses their QB of the post Jimmy Garoppolo era. Lance himself will now missout on a season in which he could’ve proven he is the right guy to take over for the 49ers. 

How does this injury impact Trey Lance?

Trey Lance was going into this season with high expectations. The third overall pick out of North Dakota State spent all of last season being the backup quarterback to Jimmy Garoppolo. He did however, make six appearances while starting in two games. Coming out of college, Lance was considered a “project quarterback”. He has all the physical and intangible qualities to play the quarterback position. Lance boasts amazing arm strength and athleticism with good size and speed for his position. 

Tony Avelar/AP

The concerns for Lance coming out of college was his lack of experience. He only started in one full season before he sat out the entire 2020 season due to the COVID pandemic. Other concerns lingered on Lance’s overall accuracy and unrefined mechanics. Going into this season, Lance was essentially taking all of the first team reps which meant he would be the starter going forward. He was receiving mixed reviews during training camp in which his accuracy was a main concern.

But his teammates raved about Lance, as shown by Brandon Aiyuk talking about Lance during training camp. Aiyuk praised Trey Lance’s deep ball and his ability to extend plays.


Lance’s first game as the full time starter came against the Chicago Bears. The one problem for Lance came in the form of the horrendous weather that struck Soldier Field. Despite the Niners going up 10-0 against a rebuilding Bears squad, the Niners eventually lost the game 19-10. In his first game being the full time starter for the Niners, Lance made some pretty impressive throws despite a downpour and made plays with his legs. 

However, in clutch moments Lance couldn’t capitalize which led to people to doubt whether or not he could be the guy to lead the 49ers back to the playoffs. Lance will now undergo a long rehab and recovery process before stepping onto the field for San Francisco. Lance missing out on this season hurts his growth considering how he needed a full year under his belt in order to prove himself as the 49ers future franchise QB.

How does this affect the San Francisco 49ers?

The 49ers as a team are back to where they were last year with Jimmy Garoppolo back under the helm at quarterback. Garoppolo has been successful during his tenure in San Francisco.Still, the Niners were not successful because of Garoppolo, they were successful in spite of him. The Niners were trying to move Garoppolo but chose to ultimately keep him due to a lack of a trade market. 

The Niners and Garoppolo agreed to a restructured 1-year contract that would make him the highest paid backup in the NFL. The deal freed up cap space for the 49ers and he also has a no-trade clause included in his contract. Regardless of who was starting at quarterback, San Francisco was considered a playoff team and with Garoppolo they are essentially the same team they were from last season in regards to their ceiling. 

Garoppolo will not take the 49ers far on his own because this team goes as far as their defense and running game will take them. Garoppolo was below average during the 49ers postseason run last season with average games against the Cowboys and Rams and a below average performance versus the Packers. 

Garoppolo is a starter in the NFL but he needs a strong ecosystem around him to thrive. He knows the 49ers system to run the show well but they’re playing a dangerous game when asking Garoppolo to play out of that structure. Regardless, the Niners will be contending for a playoff spot with Jimmy Garoppolo and the team’s move to keep him around paid off.


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