Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Will the 49ers Start Trey Lance with Jimmy G on the Roster?

Mar 26, 2022 at 9:16 AM--

The quarterback controversy in San Francisco has been the main story of the off-season. The 49ers have made strategic moves so far we, but it seems not enough for most fans. The team has three quarterbacks under contract for the 2022 season—Jimmy Garoppolo, Trey Lance, and Nate Sudfeld.

On March 10, the 49ers signed Sudfeld to a $3 million contract with $2 million guaranteed. ESPN's Adam Schefter reported two teams were interested in the free agent because he has "starter potential."

With Sudfeld getting $2 million guaranteed, it's safe to say he will be the backup quarterback for the 49ers in 2022. Remember, the last time Sudfeld threw an NFL pass was with the Eagles in 2020. According to PFF, he had 18 snaps, 15 passes, and one run against the team now known as the Washington Commanders. Sudfeld doesn't sound like a guy a team would give guaranteed money to, but for the 49ers, his one year in camp as the third-string quarterback must hold value.

Garoppolo is still on the roster, and reports claim that it's because of the shoulder surgery. Teams, like the Indianapolis Colts, were interested in Jimmy Garoppolo, but ESPN's Diana Russini reported that the reluctance to make a move for the 49ers quarterback was "not so much the medical side of it but the idea of missing time in the off-season."

With Garoppolo recovering from shoulder surgery, and the market for quarterbacks in the NFL dry, the 49ers plan to hold on to quarterback until the market opens back up. The 49ers have three options for Garoppolo—trade, release, or extend. I don't believe there's any way an extension is a possibility. Both sides appear to want to part ways. It will happen for general manager John Lynch and company at the right time.

We all know the financial complications Garoppolo poses to the team. Jimmy is set to make approximately $27 million in 2022 with the 49ers. He has a guarantee of $1.4 million and an injury settlement of $7.5 million. If the 49ers were to release Garoppolo, it would relieve cap space which could help the 49ers extend players such as wide receiver Deebo Samuel and defensive end Nick Bosa.

Garoppolo being on the roster hinders the 49ers financially, but it also slows the team mentally. At the end of the 2021 season, Garoppolo gave his farewell speech. This was the moment the organization, the team, and the fans put closure to the chapter featuring Jimmy Garoppolo. As the team prepared to move on, the announcement of the shoulder surgery kept Garoppolo around for a little longer.

Could this possibly affect young quarterback Trey Lance? This off-season, Trey Lance has been preparing himself to be the 49ers' starting quarterback. In fact, pictures are circulating the web of his workouts with teammate and wide receiver Brandon Aiyuk, along with other training videos.

According to ESPN's Jeremy Fowler, "Trey Lance has gotten the full impression behind the scenes that he will start in 2022."

Fowler believes the team loves what they saw from Trey Lance in his rookie season and assured Lance he's the guy in 2022. Trey Lance played in six games in 2021. He started two—matchups against the Arizona Cardinals and Houston Texans. Lance took 179 snaps, 71 pass attempts, 603 yards, five touchdowns, and two interceptions, per Pro Football Focus. Lance also had 86 rushing snaps, 27 designed runs for 75 yards, and 12 scrambles for 93 yards with one touchdown.

It seems to be clear that Garoppolo isn't currently going anywhere and the 49ers are in no rush to move him right now. In May, Lance should be the starting quarterback heading into OTAs (Organized Team Activities). Lance is expected to build a connection with the new and older players during this time. I wouldn't be surprised if many veteran players return to OTAs to work with Lance.

Fast forwarding to training camp, Lance is also expected to be the starting quarterback. According to Garoppolo's timetable, things can get complicated because he is likely to start throwing again at the beginning of July, assuming he passes his physical with the team. If Garoppolo isn't released or traded after passing the physical, how will this affect Lance? With Garoppolo still under contract and a member of this football team, will the 49ers continue to prep and start Trey Lance?
  • Written by:
    Wayne Breezie is a 49ers content creator. He had his first guest appearance on Ronbosports in 2012. He began writing for a Facebook group called the League of the 49ers. Next, he began writing for Nothing But Niners in 2017. In 2018, Wayne Breezie made his debut on YouTube’s Nothing But Niners show. In 2019, he started his podcast called Nitty Gritty Niners. After putting the pen down for several years, Breezie saw an opportunity to write for His first published article was in January of 2022 with 49ersCap, and he currently writes and produces weekly podcasts.
The opinions within this article are those of the writer and, while just as important, are not necessarily those of the site as a whole.


  • Niner
    Mahomes, montana, young, rodgers all waited their time. Remember farve and brees also were not immediate starters. Kyle knows when to start the rookie. Whats so bad if jg helping trent from the bench. His arm will take time to heal, he knows it.
    Mar 30, 2022 at 9:06 AM
  • Marvin Rose
    I hope they keep Jimmy and let them both compete for the starting job. If that is done your starter will be Jimmy, Lance is a poor man's Donovan McNabb
    Mar 26, 2022 at 12:09 PM

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