Trey Lance flashed his immense talent Sunday in his first career NFL start, but the 49ers' rookie quarterback was far from perfect in San Francisco's 17-10 loss to the Arizona Cardinals at State Farm Stadium.
Lance was off-target on several throws, including when sailed a pass over the head of Travis Benjamin that was picked off by Cardinals star safety Budda Baker. After the game, Baker complimented Lance's play while also thanking the rookie for the pick.
"He's fast. He can get out of that pocket. He was running the ball. He did his thing," Baker said after the Cardinals moved to 5-0. "We knew he was going to try to get out of the pocket and he did a great job of getting out of the pocket and forcing first downs and getting their offense to get on the field some more. If not, it would probably look a lot different than what it looked like. He's a great young guy, of course ... A guy who just now is getting their offense. Their offense is a pretty hard offense to learn, so he did a great job, ran the ball.
"I appreciate him, man. That overthrow, I appreciate that."
Lance finished the game 15-for-29 for 192 yards and the interception. He also rushed for 89 yards.
The No. 3 overall pick's talent was evident and it's clear how high Lance's ceiling is, but the rookie knows he has a lot to learn.
"Our defense definitely gave us a shot," Lance said after the loss. "Got to capitalize, got to do better, make more plays. Obviously, [I'm] disappointed. I really wanted to win that game. But we're going to keep our heads up, learn from it. I'm going to learn as much as I can, get as better as I can from it. I'm excited for next week."
49ers coach Kyle Shanahan believed the 49ers could have been better around Lance and that the North Dakota State product played good enough to deliver a win.
That being said, Shanahan reiterated that nothing has changed regarding the 49ers' QB situation if Jimmy Garoppolo is healthy.
"No, nothing's changed," Shanahan said. "That was just one game. It was a tough loss right there, and I'm going to talk to our whole team tomorrow and think about how we can get our whole team better coming back from the bye."
Garoppolo suffered a calf injury in the first half of the 49ers' Week 4 loss to the Seattle Seahawks and was unable to practice last week. As the 49ers head into the bye week, Shanahan is hopeful Garoppolo will be good to go when the 49ers exit the bye to face the Indianapolis Colts but knows that anything can happen with a calf injury.
"The fact that he had a chance this week, that gives me a lot of hope coming back [from the bye]," Shanahan said. "I think any time you're dealing with calves and stuff like that, you never know how they're going to react.
"I think that was similar to with [George] Kittle. I thought he was going to be alright a couple of weeks ago, and now we're going on IR. So, I don't want to speak too soon, but hopefully."