All offseason, the 49ers’ brass talked about how crucial it was to improve their depth at backup quarterback. They’d lost far too many games due to Jimmy Garoppolo’s persistent injury woes. Now, they’re testing that depth.
Kyle Shanahan said Monday that rookie quarterback Trey Lance sustained a knee sprain in his debut. Shanahan said he doesn’t know when it happened, nor does Lance, who didn’t miss a snap.
The 49ers will re-evaluate Lance at the conclusion of this week, which, fortunately for them, is their bye. Shanahan said Lance has “got a chance” to play against the Indianapolis Colts in Week 6, but won’t know at least until that update. It is not expected to be more than a two-week injury.
“It’s not a long term injury, but he’ll have to stay here on the bye week, get treatment and everything, so we should have a good idea by the end of next week whether he’s got a chance for Indy or not,” Shanahan said. “If he doesn’t, they told me it should be like one-to-two-week thing, but possibly just one.”
As for the other guy, Jimmy Garoppolo, he’s hoped to return after the bye, along with nickel corner K’Waun Williams. There’s also a “possible chance” JaMycal Hasty returns.
There were no updates on two players on PUP/Injured Reserve in Jalen Hurd or Tarvarius Moore, but Shanahan mentioned linebacker Dre Greenlaw (injured reserve, groin) has a “outside chance” to return, but is more likely to come back one or two weeks after the Colts game. Running back Jeff Wilson Jr. (PUP, meniscus) is expected back in late November.
Despite the injury and the loss, Shanahan was encouraged by Lance’s performance, mentioning again that he thought the 49ers could have won if they were better around him.
“I was proud of him. I thought he went into a tough environment vs. a real good team,” Shanahan said. “I thought he did a lot of real good things. Threw a bad pick on that first drive but I thought he bounced back well. I thought he was aggressive in what he saw. When he saw it right, he let it rip. When he didn’t think something was there, he ran aggressively. I thought he did a real good job through it all and handled the noise pretty well and I thought it was a good first experience for him.”