The first two NFL seasons for San Francisco quarterback Trey Lance haven’t exactly gone according to plan.
The Niners selected Lance with the No. 3 overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft and the North Dakota State product spent most of his rookie year sitting behind Jimmy Garoppolo.
Lance then won the starting job to begin the 2022 season, but struggled in two stars against the Chicago Bears and Seattle Seahawks before a broken ankle stopped his season in its tracks.
By the end of the season, Lance appeared to have lost his starting job for good to the breakout star Brock Purdy.
That led to reports that Lance could well be on his way out of San Francisco. But maybe it’s time to pump the breaks on those talks for a little while.
Matt Barrows of The Athletic spoke with Lance’s personal quarterback coach, Jeff Christensen, about some major mechanical changes he made in offseason. Christensen, who also coaches Kansas City Chiefs superstar Patrick Mahomes, thinks Lance could make a big leap in year three after the changes.
“I said, ‘Watch this. Watch what he does here,’” Christensen said. “It was something I was telling him to do that he wasn’t quite doing. And then he saw Patrick apply it perfectly and I think that visual buy-in, that mental buy-in, helped him past that mental hump.”
“And to his credit he just kept getting better,” he continued. “(Over) the last seven days, every day was a substantial jump.”
Christensen also said that the new throwing motion could help Lance stay healthy long-term. He noted that Lance’s previous throwing motion tended to cause arm soreness. But the new motion has since changed that.
“…I called him in ’Frisco on Saturday at noon,” Christensen said of a conversation after a particularly tough workout. “And he thought for sure his arm would be killing him. And I said, ‘OK, how’s your arm?’ He said, ‘I cannot believe I woke up and it was not sore at all.’”
At 6-foot-4, 224 pounds, Lance’s physical tools are hard to miss. And now it appears the 49ers could soon get to see the best version yet of they’re big-time investment.