Ever since Kyle Shanahan said he expects Trey Lance and Sam Darnold to both get reps with the first team during OTA’s there have been questions and concerns about the impact on the development of Lance. Some have gone as far as to say a competition would take snaps away from Lance.
The reality is Lance’s development won’t be affected and he won’t lose any snaps unless he falls to number three on the depth chart.
Let’s cover the snaps first.
During offseason practices and training camp the starting group and backup group take the same number of snaps unless they’re in a move the ball period while the third unit takes half.
The number of snaps taken in move the ball periods can fluctuate depending on how efficiently the quarterback and offense do just that, move the ball.
Naturally the next question is, “isn’t taking away some of the first team snaps bad then?”
The answer is simply, no. Nothing changes. The coaches continue putting in the same effort, in fact Kyle Shanahan has stated many times he is more concerned with the process of the quarterback going to the correct spot than the result of the play during practice.
The reality is the offensive line and quarterbacks are the only groups that don’t rotate between the first, second and third teams.
For example, a highlight of training camp last year came when rookie quarterback Brock Purdy, playing with the third group as he did throughout camp, hit Brandon Aiyuk deep down the left sideline in stride for a would-be touchdown. Lance had several of the same occurrences while working with the second group in 2021 as well.
It boils down to how each player performs. Darnold and Lance both have exceptional traits which is why they were the third player chosen in their respective draft class.
May the best player win.
Other quarterback news
According to NFL Network insider Tom Pelissero the 49ers are signing veteran quarterback Brandon Allen.
After passing on quarterback in the draft the only healthy options for San Francisco as on-field activities ramp up were Lance and Darnold. The 49ers prefer to have three quarterbacks during this time of the year.
Originally selected in the sixth round of the 2016 draft by the Jacksonville Jaguars, Allen spent his rookie season third on the depth chart. He was released late in training camp the following season before hooking on with Los Angeles. Allen spent 2017 and 2018 third on the Rams depth chart.
In 2019, Allen signed with Denver where he served as the backup to Joe Flacco. Allen made his NFL debut with the Broncos, starting three games.
Allen then signed with Cincinnati where he spent three seasons as the backup to Joe Burrow.
For his career Allen has played in 15 games and posted a 2-7 record in nine starts. He has completed 56.7 percent of his passes with ten touchdowns and six interceptions.