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Instant Analysis of the Quarterback Competition on Day 2 of Minicamp

This was Lance's turn with the starters.

SANTA CLARA -- Here's what happened in the quarterback competition between Trey Lance and Sam Darnold on the final day of 49ers minicamp.


Played with the first-string offense, completed 8 of 12 pass attempts and threw a 60-yard touchdown pass and an interception, which I'll get to in a minute. First, the touchdown pass -- it was a beauty to George Kittle, who was running deep up the sideline when Lance hit him in stride. This touchdown happened during 7-on-7 drills, when there are no offensive linemen or defensive linemen on the field. During this period, Lance was a perfect 4 for 4. But during 11 on 11s, he struggled, as he completed just 4 of 8 passes, plus he threw an interception. To be fair, one of his passes was dropped by Jauan Jennings. But he threw the interception directly to Kerry Hyder, who was standing right in front of him. Usually, defensive ends knock down those point-blank passes, but Hyder somehow held on and made a phenomenal play. Which means Lance didn't misread the defense, but he did commit a turnover, and in a real game he would have had to tackle Hyder to prevent a touchdown. Overall, Lance did not make any big plays during 11 on 11s, although he completed a nice 10-yard pass to Christian McCaffrey over the middle on 3rd and 6. Otherwise, Lance's performance did not inspire confidence.


Played with the second-string offense, completed 10 of 14 pass attempts and threw a 60-yard touchdown pass to rookie tight end Cameron Latu during 7 on 7s. This pass was extremely similar to Lance's deep TD pass to Kittle. In fact, both Lance and Darnold were perfect in 7 on 7s -- Darnold was 5 for 5. During 11 on 11 full-team drills, Darnold was 5 for 9. To be fair, Jennings dropped one of his passes (Jennings drops lots of passes in practice and I have no idea why). But Darnold got sacked three times, which means he held the ball for quite a long time. And yet, he still left big plays on the field. For example, on one play he held the ball in the pocket for a while as he surveyed the field, only to check down to a heavily covered Chris Conley, and the pass got broken up. Meanwhile, Danny Gray was running completely uncovered down the left sideline due to a busted coverage by the defense. Gray even screamed and hollered mid route to get Darnold's attention, but Darnold never saw him. Overall, Darnold didn't make any big plays during 11 on 11s. His best throw was a 15-yard completion to Ray-Ray McCloud over the middle on the final play of practice. Otherwise, Darnold's performance did not inspire confidence. Neither he nor Lance won this minicamp competition -- both lost. Expect them to continue splitting reps with the first-team in training camp until one asserts himself or Brock Purdy returns.