Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports

Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports


49ers’ Nick Bosa excited by Trey Lance’s progress, believes Brandon Aiyuk will ‘come alive’

Oct 21, 2021 at 6:45 AM--


Trey Lance entered the NFL without a whole lot of collegiate experience under his belt. He started only one full season for the North Dakota State Bison. He joined the San Francisco 49ers with a lot to learn, and the plan has always been to start Jimmy Garoppolo during the regular season, allowing Lance the time needed to absorb the offense.

The most anyone expected from Lance was to see the quarterback sprinkled into the offensive game plan from week to week. However, an injury to Garoppolo thrust the rookie into the starting lineup during Week 5.

Nick Bosa joined 95.7 The Game on Wednesday and was asked about the team's young quarterback. How much growth has the pass rusher seen from Lance since the 21-year-old first joined the squad?

"He's come a long way, definitely," Bosa told Damon Bruce and Ray Ratto. "It's obviously a position that you're not going to come in and be a top guy right way. And I think, just watching him in his first start, you really saw what you wanted to see from a guy in that position.

"He played really hard, and he didn't make too many mistakes. I mean, I was very encouraged by what I saw, and I'm excited for him."

That's high praise coming from a Pro Bowl defender who spends a great deal of time studying how to frustrate opposing quarterbacks.

Bosa was also asked about another teammate on the offensive side of the ball — Brandon Aiyuk. The second-year receiver showed flashes as a rookie but hasn't been as big a part of the game plans in 2021. 49ers quarterbacks targeted him an average of eight times per game during his rookie campaign. That number has dropped to just three targets per outing this year, and he has just eight receptions through five games.

Bruce asked Bosa if he's seen anything from Aiyuk that has caused the 49ers to utilize the talented receiver differently this season.

"To this point, Deebo has been a big player for us, and I'm sure Brandon's going to come alive here," Bosa responded. "There's a lot of games left. We've only played five. I think, yeah, his rookie year was unbelievable, so, obviously, he has [the talent]. We see it in practice every day. I think it's just a matter of time for him."

You can listen to the entire conversation with Bosa below.






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