With the NFL year rapidly approaching, Jimmy Garropolo and Trey Lance have been involved in a highly competitive quarterback duel throughout training camp and preseason. Garropolo, 29, is widely considered the favorite to return as the starter for the San Fransisco 49ers Week 1 against the Detroit Lions.
Be that as it may, there have been some rumors circulating, as NFL insiders firmly believe that rookie Trey Lance is emerging as a legitimate threat to leapfrog Garoppolo in the pecking order.
Trey Lance was selected third overall out of North Dakota State in the 2021 NFL Draft. In his last season as the signal caller for North Dakota, he threw a total of 30 pass attempts (318 total as a collegiate QB) in a condensed season as a result of the COVID pandemic, but that hasn't stopped the 21-year-old from performing brilliantly throughout preseason.
Trey Lance's remarkable preseason
In Lance's first action as an NFL quarterback, he looked extremely poised in the pocket and showcased his explosive arm down the field. The 6'4" rookie finished the preseason going 13-28, good for 230 yards, along with two touchdowns and an interception. His most impressive play was an 80-yard touchdown strike to Trent Sherrifield against the Kansas City Chiefs.
His ability to throw deep, accurate passes against NFL defenses provides head coach Kyle Shannahan with more versatility at the quarterback position. We all remember Super Bowl LIV when the 49ers faced off against the Chiefs and, in a pivotal situation, Jimmy Garropolo missed a wide-open Emmanuel Sanders downfield in a play that would've resulted in a touchdown to seal a victory in the championship.
Yes, Trey Lance's innate prowess at flinging the ball deep was immensely needed at the time.
However, the rookie has displayed some inconsistencies that will keep Jimmy Garropolo as the starter in San Fran. Trey Lance's first three drives against the Detroit Lions showcased his youth on the field. He went 1-of-6 for nine yards and an interception, creating a stagnant offense for the 49ers.
Trey Lance did finish strong, though. For the rest of the game, he completed seven passes on eight attempts, good for 93 yards along with a touchdown pass.
Lance is certainly creating buzz around training camp and the league with his talent as a passer and knowledge of the game at such a young age. That said, he's still enduring the growing pains of adjusting to the pros, which will likely earn Jimmy G the starting job -- for now.