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Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

49ers’ Jeff Wilson: Trey Lance was ready to prove critics wrong before injury

Sep 21, 2022 at 8:50 AM--

"We got your back," San Francisco 49ers linebacker Fred Warner told Trey Lance after the young quarterback was helped onto a cart following his ankle injury this past weekend.

"I'll be back," Lance responded.

This year was supposed to be an on-the-job learning season for Lance, who started just two games during his rookie 2021 campaign. Instead, this year's in-game development was cut short after less than five quarters of play.

Jimmy Garoppolo takes over at quarterback, and the 49ers remain a competitive team thanks to the veteran's experience and the roster's talent level. Still, the loss of Lance stings. The 22-year-old is the future, and now his development has hit another setback.

The second-year quarterback already had the respect of his teammates, though.

"He was already a general on the field," running back Jeff Wilson told KNBR's Brian Murphy and Markus Boucher. "He already had the respect of everybody. So none of that was ever the problem. It hurts to see because you can tell—you know how you can tell that somebody is really becoming comfortable, like feels good in their own skin?

"You could that moment was coming that everybody knew he was capable of. It was right around the corner. Shoot, it probably would have even been that game. So that's why it's so tough because you can just—like even in the huddle—you could just see it in his eyes."

There is some speculation that Lance could make a full recovery in 10 to 12 weeks, making a return this season at least possible. But, realistically, we may not see the quarterback on the field again until next season. Lance faced much criticism this offseason and was ready to prove his critics wrong before things took a terrible turn on Sunday.

"He [was] really ready to prove everybody wrong," Wilson said. "He [was] really ready to show that he could ball because he can, and that's the bummer part about it. Then he's going to have to [deal with] all the critics and the down people. All that, man, I just hate it for him because everybody knows the type of player he is, and we can't wait to get him back."

You can listen to the entire conversation with Wilson below.

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