SANTA CLARA -- Before his first completion at 49ers training camp, Trey Lance focused on the fundamentals.
Quarterbacks coach Rich Scangarello, like coach Kyle Shanahan, is conservative in his praise of Lance’s play, but thus far admires the rookie's work ethic. The position coach believes the North Dakota State product, like every quarterback in his room, will need to continue focusing on mechanics to succeed in the NFL.
“I would just say fundamentally they all are working every day,” Scangarello said on Monday. “It is always a work in progress for where you get, and where you top out at, and your abilities as a natural thrower in this league. I don’t know that you ever stop working at it.”
After OTAs, the No. 3 overall pick of the 2021 NFL Draft worked with motion mechanics coach John Beck, who is part of Tom House’s group of quarterback coaches at 3DQB. The group has famously worked with former New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady, Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan and Los Angeles Rams quarterback Matt Stafford, among others.
Jimmy Garoppolo, C.J. Beathard and Nick Mullens are also play callers who have benefitted from working with House’s group in the past. Scangarello shared that Lance worked on lower body mechanics and the footwork needed to play in Shanahan’s offense.
Scangarello, who served as the offensive quality control coach for the Falcons in 2015, also said that a great quarterback should never stop learning and looking for ways to improve.
“Matt Ryan’s biggest break through was 2016 when he made a fundamental change to his footwork for our offense,” Scangarello said. “Had a huge impact on his game which you may or may not know. That was late in his career so you never stop evolving. You have to work your craft.”
After watching Lance during OTAs Scangarello gave the rookie a plan of attack for his 40 days away from the facility. The position coach has been pleased with the improvement he has seen from his quarterback so far.
While Scangarello was diplomatic about praising Lance’s ability on the field, he was complementary of the quarterback’s work ethic and professionalism. Lance had the added challenge of being held off the field in 2020 due to COVID-19 restrictions at North Dakota State.
“For a young individual to come in here, he’s handled it really well,” Scangarello said. “It’s the most difficult position in all of sports to play. It requires a lot mentally and physically and so far he’s approached it as a professional. He has had the right attitude and he’s just trying to be the best version of himself every day.”