Why Lance's college QB coach likes fit with 49ers offense

/ by Alex Didion
Presented By Big O Tires

Trey Lance might have been a 1,000-yard rusher during his lone full season as the starting quarterback at North Dakota State, but he ran a number of under-center and pro-style concepts within the Bison offense.

Lance's quarterback coach in college, Randy Hedberg, spoke to Matt Maiocco and Laura Britt after Lance was made the 49ers' No. 3 overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft, and detailed why he believes his former pupil will thrive in Kyle Shanahan's offense.

"I do think there's tremendous upside in what Trey brings to the table. He brings a great attitude, a great work ethic into the quarterbacks room -- he's a football junkie," Hedberg told NBC Sports Bay Area. "He's one of those guys, and I've mentioned this to various coaches that I've talked to, Trey will study the game and has a very good understanding of the game, and I think plays the game with a defensive mentality. 

"I've mentioned that numerous times to people, he is just a tough, hard-nosed young man and I think that will serve him well going into the NFL."

Shanahan has enacted a scheme since taking over the 49ers in 2017 that largely focuses on play-action and working off the run game to take shots down the field, something Hedberg believes Lance is more than capable of replicating.

"Most of our play-action game is done from under center, and he's turned his back to the defense numerous times in different actions that we throw," Hedberg said. "Our big-ball throws down the field were usually from play-action."

RELATED: Why draft analyst believes Lance will win offensive ROY

Due to NDSU opting to play a spring 2021 schedule as a result of COVID-19, Lance has played just one college game in the past 15-plus months. 

Shanahan has said he had a good idea Lance was going to be the pick well before announcing him as the selection on April 29, and likely has been working hard on developing schemes to utilize Lance's talents.

While he isn't expected to be the starter right away, Lance has all the tools Shanahan could ask for out of a franchise QB, and hopes to eventually deliver a Super Bowl trophy back to the Bay Area.

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