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George Kittle’s praise for Trey Lance confirms his past struggles

George Kittle noted Trey Lance looks “significantly better,” which leads Mike Florio and Chris Simms to spell out why the QB's knowledge of the offense and increased confidence makes him a seamless option.

49ers tight end George Kittle has plenty of praise for quarterback Trey Lance, the third overall pick in the 2021 draft. Kittle’s positive comments, however, make it clear that Lance struggled in the past.

“I think Trey looks significantly better than he did last year,” Kittle told reporters on Tuesday. “I think his confidence is there. I think that he’s throwing really good passes. . . . I think Trey’s, he just looks comfortable back there. He doesn’t look like -- um, he just looks like he’s having fun.”

Watch the clip. He stops himself from saying, “He doesn’t look like he did last year,” or something along those lines.

That’s significant because Lance was the Week One starter in 2022. It’s fair to ask whether his teammates truly believed he should have been.

This year, Lance likely won’t be the Week One starter. That job goes to Brock Purdy, if healthy. If he isn’t, Sam Darnold could take over.

But they’ll be keeping Lance because, last year, they needed QB3. If that’s who Lance is this year, there’s a chance they’ll need him, too.

If he ends up playing, apparently he’ll be ready. Apparently, he won’t look like -- um, he’ll just look like he’s having fun.