Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports

Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports

Peter King: 49ers QB Trey Lance has to ‘hit the ground running’ in Week 1

Feb 15, 2022 at 10:41 AM--

Obviously, the San Francisco 49ers need Trey Lance to have a great offseason. After all, the 21-year-old quarterback will likely be the team's starter next season.

"That's the plan. That's the plan," Lance told Rich Eisen last week. "That's my plan."

Most expect the 49ers to trade their starting quarterback since 2017, Jimmy Garoppolo, officially ushering in the Lance era in Santa Clara. Lance has little experience, though, making a strong offseason a priority for last year's No. 3 overall pick. He started just two games last season. Before that, he played in just one game since January 11, 2020.

Peter King of NBC Sports says a good offseason won't cut it. The 49ers were in the NFC Championship Game and have a talented roster capable of carrying a young quarterback through any growing pains. However, a strong start to the season by Lance could make the 49ers a dangerous opponent in 2022.

"I think it is an absolutely gigantic priority that Trey Lance has to hit the ground running in Week 1 in September," King told 95.7 The Game's Damon Bruce and Ray Ratto. "He needs to have a great offseason, not a good offseason. He needs to have a great offseason. And so, to me, when I look at what they need to do, I think this needs to be something that Trey Lance is going to have to devote himself and do everything that Kyle Shanahan wants him to do.

"Look, they're forbidden from doing a lot of things because of the Collective Bargaining Agreement, but you voluntarily can do whatever you want. So I think they've got to spend an inordinate amount of time making sure that Trey Lance is ready to go and ready to play at a high level. That would be my No. 1 priority."

King isn't the only one who believes this is a big offseason for the young quarterback.

"I think this offseason is going to be huge for [Lance]," wide receiver Deebo Samuel said last week, "just like it was my second year in the league. It was really big for me, and sadly, I got hurt, but with time comes greatness.

"So I feel like the more time that [he's] able to put in and get the mechanics, he'll know what it takes to be a pro. I feel like he'll do a good job in this league."

Bruce joked that maybe Lance should move in with Shanahan this offseason. While that isn't allowed, King had another idea for Lance until the quarterback can meet with his coaches again.

"Maybe what [Lance] does too is maybe he flies to Denver, spends two weeks with Mike Shanahan at Shanahan's house, and he just does it that way," King suggested. "There's no rule against that, obviously."

You can listen to the entire conversation with King below.

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