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Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports

49ers’ Jeff Wilson says Trey Lance is ‘maturing at a rapid pace,’ talks fantasy football slap

Jun 1, 2022 at 4:22 PM--

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There has been a lot of debate surrounding the pace of Trey Lance's development as the quarterback enters his second season with the San Francisco 49ers—likely his first as an NFL starter. While the national media pushes the narrative of doubt in the 22-year-old player, teammates and 49ers coaches continue to express confidence in Lance.

Need proof of their confidence in Lance? The 49ers have been trying to trade their starter of the past four-and-a-half seasons, Jimmy Garoppolo, all offseason. Of course, that stalled when Garoppolo underwent shoulder surgery on March 8, and his status remains in limbo.

Count running back Jeff Wilson Jr. among the 49ers players who have been impressed with Lance's development compared to the quarterback's rookie campaign.

"You can tell he's way more demanding," Wilson told reporters after Wednesday's practice. "He's always been demanding, don't get me wrong, but you can just tell that he's embracing the role. And you can see it. He's growing up. He's maturing at a rapid pace. And it's every day. It's not just since we came back to OTAs. He gets better every day with whatever he needs to do, and he's been on top of his game."

Wilson was asked if Lance's progress has been both mental and physical.

"No doubt," he responded. "All this time, that's the nature of this game that we play. But he won't have no problem with it. He's just going to keep on learning from Kyle (Shanahan) and [quarterback coach Brian Griese], and I think he's going to be a great player."

Wilson couldn't escape questions about being the focal point of a feud between Cincinnati Reds outfielder Tommy Pham and San Francisco Giants outfielder Joc Pederson, resulting in the former slapping the latter. The dispute was because of the fantasy football league to which the two belonged last season and the rules for injured players.

It was later revealed that Wilson was the injured player at the center of the conflict.

"That was crazy, man," Wilson told reporters while laughing. "Actually, Robbie was the first person that told me about it—Robbie Gould. But that was crazy. I guess I'm just honored to be in the conversation. And shout out to Joc for having me on the team and taking one for the team."

Wilson doesn't focus too much on his fantasy stats, though. He figures if he does his job, fantasy team owners who drafted him will be happy.

"I really don't get too much into it," Wilson explained. "I just know all that we do on the field helps them win. So I try to do my part, and I let them do theirs."

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