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49ers QB Trey Lance scored closer to Brock Purdy on cognitive tests than suggested, says co-founder of test

Rohan Chakravarthi
Mar 6, 2023 at 4:30 PM

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Two weeks ago, the Athletic's Matt Barrows wrote a detailed report on quarterback Brock Purdy's pre-NFL Draft cognitive test, which the rookie aced, scoring in the 95th percentile on the test that measures how quickly and accurately athletes process information.

The score was especially impressive, as Barrows illustrated data detailing that high scores on the S2 Cognition test correlated to better statistical results, such as a higher passer rating.

Of course, the reveal of the test information comes on the heels of Purdy's impressive rookie season, where he broke several NFL records, both regular and postseason, helping make more sense about why the 49ers invested a draft pick on the Iowa State product.

But, what did the S2 cognition test reveal about San Francisco's other young, intelligent quarterback Trey Lance?

Initially, Brandon Ally, the co-founder of S2 Cognition, who administers the mind test, revealed to Barrows that Lance scored well, but not in the Purdy tier.

"He's not in the Brock Purdy range but he didn't score poorly," Ally said, via Barrows.

However, with a lack of clarity surrounding the comments on Lance's score, Ally joined the "Clutch Gene Sports" podcast with host Marco Martinez to discuss the true difference between San Francisco's young quarterbacks, which was closer than initially inferred.

"Yeah, I would say that Trey was closer to Brock than the 80th percentile," Ally said, via Martinez. "From a cognitive perspective, I'll be honest with you, San Francisco has two really good quarterbacks to work with there."

With Purdy scoring in the 95th percentile, Ally's comments suggest that Lance scored around the 88th-95th percentile, with sources revealing to Martinez that the 2021 third overall pick actually scored within the 91st-93rd percentile on the cognition test.

Of course, Ally acknowledged that cognitive skills are only one part of the puzzle for being a quarterback, but nonetheless an important factor, with statistics backing up the results of the S2 tests that NFL teams are becoming accustomed to.

"I don't know that it's an either-or kind of thing. Both of those guys, from a cognitive perspective, again, there's so much that goes into success, right? You got to have the physical skills, the arm talent, you've got to have the psychological makeup. Some of these kids don't like contact, and I'm not saying one over the other there, there's just so many things that go into being a successful NFL quarterback that aren't cognitive-related."

What is Ally's suggestion for the 49ers and their quarterback situation from an outsider's perspective? Providing Lance with the requisite reps to give him a chance to succeed, as no reps are "wasted reps".

"His S2 report would suggest that he needs the reps and he will succeed," Ally said to Martinez. "Even at high school football, it's hard to get reps that are 'wasted reps'".

You can watch Ally's entire interview with Martinez down below.

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.
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