Trey Lance’s Debut 49ers Performance is Highlighted by an 80-Yard Touchdown Pass

Jimmy Garoppolo received the start and played a whole series, as predicted.

The big attraction, Trey Lance, arrived next.

The No. 3 overall pick in 2021’s first preseason drive ended in a three-and-out with an incomplete pass and a sack for the San Francisco 49ers.

Then came a second chance to make a great first impression, and the North Dakota State product did not disappoint, connecting with Trent Sherfield for an 80-yard touchdown.

Lance’s first action was a memorable one, as the 49ers fell 19-16 to the Chiefs in preseason action on Saturday night.

“It was super exciting,” Lance said after the game. “Kind of the moment you dream of scoring your first touchdown. Even though it’s preseason, it’s pretty cool. With my teammates, the guys in that locker room, that they were so excited for me and for Trent making that play. It was for sure a special moment and I wish I could’ve capitalized on the opportunities that came after that.”

Lance took over after the opening drive and ended his night following the first drive of the second half. His final line was 5 of 14 for 128 yards, the one score, no interceptions and a 93.7 QB rating.

“There was some good and some bad. By no means was it perfect,” 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan said. “Definitely missed a couple. There was a couple spots that could’ve gone to different places. Sometimes a couple balls that sailed on him that he would like to have back, but he also came out pretty good, too – making the right plays, getting the right spots. I think he had a couple drops there, especially on a third down that I think he could’ve kept the drive going if we had caught it. It was a good first day. I didn’t want it to go perfect for him. [There’s] some things he could learn from and there’s a lot of things we can go over tomorrow.”

In the first half, Lance had to contend with three receiver drops. Lance took a hammering in the shadows of the 80-yard high spot. He was sacked four times and was under constant pressure from a Niners offensive line that had a few starters on the field but battled immensely.

The rookie slid back left, calmly set up, and delivered brilliance on a play-action to the right, hitting Sherfield just a foot behind stride. Sherfield went from zero to six in a flash.

“I was a little bit nervous coming around because the corner had gotten hands on him a little bit, so he was probably only at 5 to 10 yards where typically if he didn’t have hands on him he would already be down the field at 15,” Lance said of the play. “But yeah, he made a great play, obviously, and set the angle perfectly. So, for me, it was one of those situations, obviously, where I want to get the ball in his hands.”

It was one big moment in one preseason game, but it was a snapshot of what could become for Lance and will no doubt kindle 49ers fans’ desire to see the rookie replace Garoppolo.

As much of a dream-like scenario as it was for Lance, though, it’s not what he’ll be focusing on going forward.

“Obviously, I will focus on what I did incorrectly more than what I’ll focus on what I did well,” he said. “There’s something I can learn on pretty much every play out there. That Jimmy ran, that I ran, and that Josh [Rosen] ran. So, it’ll be good for me to go through and watch it. My first time in a game setting, being tackled in a while. [I’m] excited to go back and watch that and really see if what I felt lines up with what I’m seeing on tape.”

Source: NFL

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