Why NDSU coach Matt Entz believes Trey Lance is a great fit for the 49ers

May 13, 2021 at 8:39 AM--


Matt Entz, the college head coach of Trey Lance, joined KNBR on Wednesday to discuss his former quarterback, who was drafted No. 3 overall two weeks ago by the San Francisco 49ers. The North Dakota State coach is excited to see what his former player can do at the pro level and feels the quarterback landed in the perfect spot.

Entz sees 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan's offense as the perfect fit for the 21-year-old rookie.

"I'm excited for him. I think it's a great match," Entz told Mark Willard. "Just from my conversations with Coach Shanahan, I think there's some things that he wants to expand on, being able to utilize the quarterback as another option. And in the NFL, you can't afford to get your quarterback injured, but it can be part of the complementary phase to the run game, and things of that nature.

"I think he opens up a lot of things that now it forced defenses, one, to be on their heels a little bit as well. But it does increase or improve your offensive package that maybe you're going into a game with."

Lance's athleticism gives Shanahan a weapon unlike any he's had during his time with the 49ers. The quarterback's ability to absorb information quickly could prepare him to take over the offense sooner than most anticipate.

"I think they're both excited about the development piece," Entz continued. "I know Trey is excited to get into the NFL and get going. And I think Coach Shanahan is excited to get a chance to work with him because he knows he's working with a young man that nobody really knows what the ceiling looks like for him."

There remains some concern surrounding Lance's lack of collegiate experience. The quarterback started just 17 games at NDSU. His last game appearance came on October 3, 2020. The pandemic was responsible for the Bison postponing their season until the spring.

Lance's only full season came in 2019. Even then, he only attempted 287 passes. However, the quarterback also threw 28 touchdowns, ran for another 14, and didn't toss an interception on the way to an NCAA Division I Football Championship.

What does Entz think about the lengthy gap between significant playing time?

"It's no different than if a guy comes back from an injury," the coach said. "You're always concerned about him adjusting to the speed of the game and getting back into it. That's why the preseason is going to be so critical for a guy like Trey to get some good, quality reps. And maybe it's reps with the first offensive line just so you feel like he can really get some things going, create some continuity, get some first downs, and be out there for an extended amount of time.

"But he'll be back quickly. I think it's like riding a bike. He's not going to forget how to do it."

You can listen to the entire conversation with Entz below.






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