Uncertain Future for Trey Lance as 49ers Make Backup Quarterback Decision

The San Francisco 49ers are facing a crucial juncture regarding Trey Lance, their young quarterback talent. Recent developments suggest that Lance’s position within the team is in flux, with Sam Darnold being named the primary backup to starter Brock Purdy for the upcoming 2023 season.

As a result, Lance finds himself relegated to the third-string position, which has raised questions about his future with the team. This article delves into the details of this situation, Lance’s injury-ridden journey, potential trade scenarios, and the 49ers’ strategic decision-making.

Lance’s Ups and Downs

Trey Lance was given the opportunity to lead the 49ers’ offense last season, but a season-ending ankle injury in Week 2 cut his tenure short. His injuries have been a recurring theme, with finger issues affecting his rookie campaign and a broken ankle further hampering his progress.

Despite his potential, Lance’s injuries and subsequent setbacks have impeded his development as a consistent starting quarterback.

Backup Quarterback Shuffle

The recent decision to designate Sam Darnold as the backup to Brock Purdy speaks volumes about the 49ers’ evaluation of their quarterback depth chart. Darnold’s strong performance during offseason workouts and minicamps apparently impressed the team’s coaching staff.

This decision has pushed Lance down the depth chart to a third-string role, prompting speculation about his future with the team.

Trade Speculation

The 49ers’ front office has reportedly been exploring trade options for Lance throughout the offseason. However, despite their efforts, they have not received any substantial trade offers.

The lack of attractive trade proposals may have prompted the team to consider other avenues for Lance’s future, including a potential trade. This suggests that the 49ers are open to exploring opportunities that align with Lance’s best interests.

Potential Fit with the Falcons

One potential landing spot that has been discussed for Lance is the Atlanta Falcons. Head coach Arthur Smith’s affinity for mobile quarterbacks and a strong running game could create a favorable environment for Lance’s skill set.

The presence of young offensive playmakers like Bijan Robinson, Drake London, and Kyle Pitts could further enhance Lance’s potential impact within the Falcons’ offensive scheme.

Lance’s Path Forward

The current uncertainty surrounding Lance’s future highlights the challenges he has faced since entering the NFL. While trade calls were reportedly received for Lance earlier in the year, the team’s leadership seemed hesitant to make a move.

However, the recent changes in the depth chart and Lance’s absence from practice suggest that the 49ers are considering a range of options, including a potential trade that aligns with Lance’s preferences.


Trey Lance’s journey with the San Francisco 49ers has been marked by injuries, setbacks, and shifting roles within the team. The recent decision to name Sam Darnold as the backup quarterback underscores the organization’s evolving perspective on its quarterback depth chart.

With potential trade options on the table and Lance’s absence from practice, the situation remains fluid. As the 49ers gear up for their final preseason game, all eyes are on Lance’s future, as both the team and the young quarterback navigate this critical juncture.

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