QB Trey Lance Press Conference
QB Trey Lance
Press Conference – September 14, 2022
San Francisco 49ers
When you went back and watched the tape of Sunday, what did you see?
“Real similar to what I said right after the game. I missed a few early. Whoever was ahead going into a two-minute drive in that fourth quarter, it was going to be a tough situation for whoever was in that situation. So, for me, for us, we made too many mistakes early. I missed too many early, but yeah, I’m going to turn the page on that.”
You’re very specific with your criticisms of yourself, which is somewhat unusual. With quarterbacks, they usually just say I missed a couple throws, there’s a couple throws I want to have back, but you pointed to the exact plays. Where does that come from? Just as far as I assume you want to be accountable as a leader and all that.
“I’m the only one that touches the ball other than the center every single play, so it’s my decision most of the time where the ball goes, how it gets there, pre-snap, getting us in the right play, getting us in the right call, whether it’s run game, pass game, protections, whatever it may be. So I make most of the decisions other than the play call with [Head Coach] Kyle [Shanahan]. So at the end of the day, I see it as there was always pretty much a better answer if it’s an incomplete pass, whatever, for me, going back and watching the tape there’s always an option or always a better answer. Unless we do make an explosive or I do make the right play, but ball placement, little things like that that could have got us to third-and-two versus third-and-four, little things like that. But yeah, going back and watching the tape, whether it’s a practice or a game I feel like that’s where I learn so much every single rep because little things like that can make all the difference in the long run, especially in a game like that.”
Have you ever had a coach or your dad or a family member say you’re the quarterback, you’re accountable, don’t make excuses?
“It’s kind of common sense. Like I said, I touch the ball every single play, so what I do with it makes all the difference short-term and long-term in the game.”
This might be kind of an obvious question, but what’s been the biggest change you’ve had to make as a runner of the football from the college level to the NFL level?
“I’m not bigger, faster, and stronger than pretty much everyone else. Guys catch up a lot quicker, space is filled, guys close a lot faster, and I have to learn to protect myself, just being in a different situation knowing how important it is for me to stay healthy.”
Have you had any moments where you’re like, oh wow, they really are fast, like in the Texans game last year did it feel like there were a couple times where the safeties got there quick?
“Guys coming downhill, guys don’t hesitate. That’s definitely one of the biggest things, for me, especially running laterally, I got to be able to protect myself.”
How do you feel you’re doing in that area? In terms of protecting yourself?
“Continuing to grow. There’s always going to be, like I said a million times, there’s always going to be better decisions I can make. But on Sunday I felt like I protected myself pretty well, I felt good for the most part. Maybe a couple I could have got down one step faster or slashing, finding an edge and getting down. But for the most part, when I’m running between the tackles or running on third down, I’m not ever going to slide and go fourth-and-two and just give up on the play and send our defense on the field if it’s a situation like that.”
What’s your assessment of what the Seahawks did defensively in their first game?
“They play fast, a little bit different schematically, but stout interior D-line, linebackers play fast. And [Seahawks FS Quandre] Diggs is still one of the best safeties in the game.”
I ask you because there was a lot of instances where you were really close to the first down marker and oftentimes you ran into Bears LB Roquan Smith, but Kyle said you have to be a football player. And so you’re talking about it’s third-and-eight and you’ve gotten seven yards, you’re not going to slide?
“Yeah, absolutely. Yeah.”
With RB Jordan Mason and Ty Davis-Price, Kyle said that they’re going to have to grow up really fast. Kind of how have you seen them progress from beginning of training camp to now?
“Yeah, they’ve grown up a lot, really fast off the field specifically. Just how they take care of their bodies. Ty, I’m around a lot and JP just getting know him still, more and more every day. But the way those guys have matured, I’ve just seen off the field, honestly. They’ve always came to work in meetings and everything, locked in, taking notes, whatever it may be, asking questions. But off the field, those guys have learned definitely to be pros and from [RB] Elijah [Mitchell] and [RB] Jeff [Wilson Jr.] and [FB Kyle Juszczyk] Juice and all the guys they’ve had in and out of the room since OTAs. They’ve learned a lot from those guys.”
How much does it help you when TE George Kittle is on the field, in your huddle? The vibe he brings both on the field and on the sidelines?
“Yeah totally, high-energy guy. He’s still around obviously in the building itself, but hopefully getting him back this week. Everyone can see what he does with the ball in his hands. People don’t always see what he does in the run game and just from an energy standpoint, for sure, so it’d be great to get him back if we can get him back this week.”
The last game was weird cause it was in adverse conditions, but WR Brandon Aiyuk had only three touches. How big of an emphasis is it for you to just get him more involved?
“It’s kind of what the defense dictates, what the concepts dictate. He made a couple big plays and he’s had a great training camp, so still all the trust in the world, it definitely wasn’t anything like that. I know you guys freak out when B.A. only has, you especially, when B.A. only has a certain amount of touches. But it’s definitely not like we go into a game being like, ‘okay, we’re going to get Deebo the ball eight times plus’, or whatever it may be. Deebo’s obviously going to get more touches because he is in the run game, but yeah, B.A. for sure. He’s a huge weapon for us and he’s done a great job and that’ll start to show up more and more, I promise.”
Did you know that that pass to WR Ray-Ray McCloud was going to be such a tight fit and did you learn anything from that play?
“Yeah, I thought going back and watching the tape I could have thrown on one hitch instead of two, which would’ve made it look a lot easier. But yeah, man, he made a great catch, it’s same throw I threw to B.A., another high-cross on the first drive, but Ray-Ray has done a great job, man, just being able to trust those guys. Just how consistent they’ve been in their routes, getting to their spots, their landmarks setting their angles, everything like that. It makes it easier for me.”
Did you have to put a little extra zip on that pass then?
“It was actually more of a layered ball and the ball was a little heavy at that point, but it wasn’t too bad. Like I said, it was one of those throws that we made that I needed to make more of in the first half.”
When you attempt some of the screens to Deebo and we say, ‘oh, that’s an easy throw. That’s a layup.’ Is it easy like that? And are there nuances there that the layman isn’t seeing and why isn’t that automatic all the time for you?
“We talk about it, again, not using the weather as an excuse, but in the weather in that situation like catch and throw are some of the hardest throws with those balls just because you don’t know what the ball is going to be like when you take a seven-step drop or a five-step drop, you can kind of feel the ball, spin the ball, find a dry spot or find a spot where it’s not a disaster, but yeah, there were some ugly ones out there on Sunday for sure. And I’m not blaming it on the ball, just continue to work it, be more consistent, but hopefully we’re not playing too many games in those conditions like there were in the fourth quarter.”
Was it inconsistent, like you would get a different ball in terms of wetness each time you took a snap?
“Yeah, we run a play, guy catches the ball drops it in the puddle, which we we’ve talked about a few times if we ever play in that game again or in a situation like that again. But yeah, they’re rotating balls in and out and our equipment staff does a great job of getting us the driest balls we possibly can with those 12 game balls that we get.”
Did you ever try throwing with a glove on your hand?
“Last year I did a few times, yeah. But I didn’t this week, didn’t rep it at all. Didn’t think it would get to that point, but I don’t know, honestly, if a glove would’ve saved me at all.”
You may have a rainy game this Sunday, so does that mean you practice getting water balls squirted on or anything?
“We’ll see. Yeah, later on in the week for sure we’ll throw wet balls, later in the week. But that’s not something that we’re a whole lot worried about. I thought the first half we had every opportunity in the world, but if we get in that fourth quarter situation, it’s a little bit different.”
Trey does being at home provide a comfort level or does it add more stress as you guys kind of turn the page from Week One and try to have a bounce-back performance?
“Neither, I just turned the page on last week. This week we’re locked in, whatever it is. Obviously travel is really the only thing, our schedule changes a little bit with travel, but from a mental standpoint, preparation standpoint, everything’s the same. Just what room I do my stuff in.”
You said after the game that you felt great, physically, how did you feel Monday morning?
“Monday morning. Oh yeah, I felt fine. My neck honestly was a little sore that was the first thing because I don’t get hit at all throughout the year, so guys kind of get to build up, get their necks ready for the season, but my neck was the biggest thing. But other than that, yeah, I feel good.”