The Case For Starting Trey Lance
The Niners invested heavily in Trey Lance at the 2021 NFL Draft. The front office sent three first-round picks to move up the board and snag the North Dakota State signal-caller. This move speaks to the talent that Lance possesses, including superb athleticism as a runner and a powerful arm capable of hitting every level of the defense.
Lance is a ball of clay that Shanahan can still shape in his image. He is a souped-up version of Brock Purdy physically, giving San Francisco a player capable of leveling the playing field in the NFC. It is a risk, but the Niners showed their hand by trading so much for the unproven quarterback — the team should see it through.
The Case Against Starting Trey Lance
Lance is wildly inaccurate and has been his entire career. His inexperience with traditional dropbacks is glaringly obvious while watching. Furthermore, Lance hasn’t faced elite talent on defense often, even if he logged several practice reps against the vaunted Niners’ defense.
The roster doesn’t have time to work through the growing pains that Lance could suffer during his first “real” year as a starter since 2019. Shanahan shouldn’t completely abandon his vision with the 23-year-old, but he is not ready to be the guy on a Super Bowl roster yet.