It isn't the result they wanted, but it is the performance they needed to see.
Trey Lance showed promise in the 49ers 17-10 loss to the Cardinals.
Lance didn't have any impressive stats as he completed 15 of 29 passes for 192 yards, an interception and 89 yards rushing. However, the stats do not paint the picture of how promising Lance looked.
That is a performance that Kyle Shanahan needed to see. It is a performance that should, at the very least, make Shanahan think twice about going back to Jimmy Garoppolo. After seeing how Lance fared against the Cardinals, you cannot roll back to Garoppolo. That is a performance to build off of with Lance. There was a lot to like, and of course a lot to work on.
This is why you keep Lance as the starter going forward. He is only going to continue to improve and develop with playing time. There will hardly be any growth on his part if he is just kept on the shelf and relegated back to a scout team quarterback. The mistakes and errant throws Lance made now could be improved upon by Week 11 for all we know. But the 49ers will never know that if they do not play him.
Besides, there was no point in the loss to the Cardinals that it felt like Garoppolo would have been the better option. In fact, I would argue it would have looked uglier than it did. The pass rush would have made it a living terror for Garoppolo. Lance was able to defeat that for a portion of the game with his legs. And that is a huge ceiling raiser for the 49ers offense. The athletic ability of Lance gives the offense a new dynamic.
It is all on Shanahan to finally turn the page to the Trey Lance era.