Scoring touchdowns for the 49ers should come easier in 2022.
Having Trey Lance as the starting quarterback gives them a new dynamic to do so. Lance can hurt a defense with both his arm and legs. Kyle Shanahan should be able to utilize Lance and put him in a variety of situations that optimizes his strengths so that the offense can score easier.
When it comes to his arm, Lance will have no limitations. The deep passing game will become a thing for the 49ers. Since defenses will still know the 49ers want to run the ball, Kyle Shanahan can easily dial up a variety of plays to take shots deep for scores. Lance could see himself with a lot of passing touchdowns this season. DraftKings sportsbook has Lance’s over/under number at 21.5 touchdowns.
So will Lance have over or under 21.5 touchdowns?
I’m hammering the over and not thinking twice about it. Jimmy Garoppolo has been able to tally 20 or more touchdowns for the 49ers excluding the seasons when he was out for the majority of the time. Getting passing touchdowns with an average quarterback who is limited was not too difficult for Shanahan. Imagine how that number will look now that he can put Lance on the move to throw or even just outright take a shot. The possibilities to attack a defense have grown drastically for the 49ers thanks to the unique physical traits that Lance possesses.
Where this gets tricky is if Lance starts to struggle and stays cold. Shanahan will definitely look to dial it back with him and call a safer offense that doesn’t put too much of the game in Lance’s hands. Then there is the aspect of Lance as a runner. He very well will have several rushing touchdowns this season and that could cut into how many passing touchdowns he accumulates. I expect both to play a part in being a hindrance in Lance getting 22 touchdowns.
But it won’t be a hefty enough hindrance to keep him from going over 21.5. I think Lance gets 23 passing touchdowns and five rushing this year. A pretty solid output considering the Niners are a run-first offense. It wouldn’t shock me if Lance gets as high as 26 touchdowns, either. A lot of deep shots the 49ers will take could be like a layup line for Lance if defenses commit to the run.
Which would you choose with Lance over/under at 21.5 passing touchdowns?