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Trey Lance Shines in First Game of Preseason

Lance’s final stat line resulted in 4-of-5, 92 passing yards and a touchdown. Lance also possessed a 158.3 QB rating, which is perfect.

Overreacting to the preseason is often easy to do. After all, it happens every year. Despite this, the preseason can be a solid indicator of what’s to come when it matters. In Friday’s game against the Packers, Trey Lance took the field for the first time as the full-time starter. Throughout training camp, Lance had various ups and downs and acquired several doubters. 

On Friday, Lance made them reassess.

Lance’s first drive of the game started at his own 41. After a 2-yard run from Trey Sermon, Lance scampered out of a collapsing pocket and picked up 7. After a 1st down carry, Lance ran a beautiful bootleg and completed a dump-off to new signee Ray-Ray McCloud for an 8-yard gain. Lance’s last completion of the drive came on a high throw to Ross Dwelley, a pickup of 2.

Lance’s second drive, also his last, was where he shined the brightest. On 2nd and 14, Lance completed a screen pass to Sermon for a pickup of 8. This screen pass would set up a gorgeous 76-yard bomb to Danny Gray which resulted in a touchdown. Gray essentially ran a deep fade towards the left sideline, where Lance was able to lead him in stride. Gray did a tremendous job of outrunning the defensive back, staying in bounds as well.

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Lance’s final stat line resulted in 4-of-5, 92 passing yards and a touchdown. Lance also possessed a 158.3 QB rating, which is perfect. With that being said, here is what Lance did well in his short time on the field.

1. Solid pocket awareness

While I'm using this point primarily due to one play, the play was good enough to make this point. As formerly mentioned, Lance scampered for a 7-yard gain to bring the sticks closer. While this may not sound overly impressive, Lance did two great things during this play. Firstly, Lance felt the pressure on his backside and was able to step up with no hesitation. Oftentimes, young quarterbacks play nervous as opposed to calm. This results in sacks that typically could be avoided, but not for Lance. The most impressive thing from this play was Lance’s trickery with his eyes. As Lance stepped forward to evade the pressure, he did a superb job of keeping his eyes downfield and keeping the defense on its toes. Instead of immediately tucking the ball, Lance surveyed the field calmly, then made his decision. Hell, he even added a pump fake for good measure. This one play was an extravagant sight to see from the first-year starter.

2. Leadership

Again, I’m using this based on one play, but it applies just like the former. On Lance’s beautiful touchdown pass to Danny Gray, he did something that can often go unnoticed to an average fan. Despite Gray being on the complete opposite side of the field, Lance ran more than 70 yards just to celebrate with his teammate. Yes, this is an extremely minuscule detail, but the minuscule details can bolster chemistry. It was easy to tell that despite a great throw, Lance did not want to make it about himself, but rather the team. Again, a tremendous quality for a young quarterback to possess.

Unfortunately, the level of play displayed on Friday is unsustainable. Lance will have some games in which you will want to scream at your television, but he will also provide excellent moments that may outweigh the bad.