D. Ross Cameron-USA TODAY Sports

D. Ross Cameron-USA TODAY Sports

Longtime 49ers reporter asked if he’s ever seen a rookie QB as special as Trey Lance

Aug 5, 2021 at 6:45 PM--

The Trey Lance Hype Train is racing at full speed — and probably nearly full capacity. It's amazing how a few nearly flawless practices — against the second-team defense — can influence training camp chatter.

Matt Maiocco of NBC Sports Bay Area tried to slow down the Trey Lance Hype Train during an interview this week on KNBR. Of course, that was immediately after adding fuel to it.

The well-respected reporter has covered the 49ers for nearly three decades. Fans value Maiocco's opinion. 49ers play-by-play announcer, Greg Papa, asked Maiocco if he has ever seen a rookie quarterback as special as Lance in all of his years covering the team.

Maiocco's response was very telling.

"No, not even close. Not even close. No," Maiocco said.

It's worth noting that the 49ers haven't drafted many high-profile quarterbacks in recent years. The only one drafted in the first two rounds since Alex Smith was selected No. 1 overall in 2005 was Colin Kaepernick in 2011. Plus, we haven't even seen Lance in a preseason game yet. It's still early.

"And yes, I do want to pump the brakes," Maiocco continued. "Let's not get too carried away with it because they've only practiced in pads two days. But it's everything. He just has the right touch. He acts like a seasoned pro. He stands up there at the press conference and answers your questions. And then you go back and look at what he said, and you realize, 'Wow, he didn't say anything,' which is exactly what a quarterback should be. Look good, speak well, but really don't say a whole lot.

"The way he's been so deferential toward Jimmy Garoppolo, from what I understand, just all the work he's put in those 40 days he left the facility, he came back a better football player."

Offensive coordinator Mike McDaniel told reporters this week that Lance spent his time off working on the fundamentals and his mechanics.

"He really put that time in," McDaniel said, "because we told them, 'Hey, listen, you're going to have to worry about all this other stuff (when you return),' in terms of defenses, formations, reads, all those things."

Lance took that seriously, and the coaches have been impressed with his progress. So has the media.

"He's throwing the ball accurately," Maiocco said. "He's throwing the ball with pace when it needs to be drilled in there. He's throwing it with nice touch when it needs to be. Just the last three days, I think it's been, where he's started running. Man, he just looks the part."

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