Simms questions 49ers trading up to No. 3 to draft Lance

Trey Lance

When the 49ers made their trade with the Miami Dolphins from the No. 12 pick all the way up to No. 3, everyone speculated which quarterback general manager John Lynch and coach Kyle Shanahan had in mind. 

Ohio State' Justin Fields felt like the frontman at first before Alabama's Mac Jones seemed to be in the lead all the way up to the draft. It turns out North Dakota State's Trey Lance was the top dog the whole time.

NBC Sports' Chris Simms questions if the 49ers really had to trade two first-round picks plus a third-rounder if they really wanted to Lance this badly. 

"Did you really have to trade up to No. 3 to get Trey Lance? I don't think they did, really, honestly," Simms said on "Pro Football Talk Live. "Just looking at it, looking at the board, it was a trade that was made very early on in the process and maybe it was made jumping into conclusions of what you thought teams might do or anything like that.

"But at a base level right now, from what I know around the NFL, what I've said around here and things like that, if the 49ers didn't take Trey Lance at three, nobody knows exactly where he would have landed. I know he would have gone in the first round. But I don't think it was in any danger of anybody in the top 10 taking him. That's also something that they're gonna kind of be held under a microscope about too as we go forward."


Lance was the third straight QB taken in the 2021 draft behind Trevor Lawrence to the Jacksonville Jaguars and Zach Wilson to the New York Jets. No other QBs were selected in the top 10. 

The Chicago Bears traded up to No. 11 to pick Fields and Jones was taken by the New England Patriots with the No. 15 pick. 

RELATED: 49ers' York comfortable if Lance doesn't play for two years

Lance came into the draft as perhaps the big mystery for multiple reasons. He is only 20 years old, he started only 17 games in college, he played just one game in the last 15 1/2 months at the time of the draft and he played against lower competition at NDSU compared to who Fields and Jones played against. 

However, Shanahan and Lynch clearly loved what they saw in Lance and felt they had to do whatever they could to get their franchise QB of the future.

Simms can say what he wants. The truth is, the 49ers' decision-makers had to have felt otherwise. Now Lance must prove they made the right pick when he steps on the field. 

Whenever that might be.

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