Trey Lance: Denver Broncos 2021 NFL Draft target and how he fits
A potential top 10 selection in the 2021 NFL Draft, Trey Lance has been a trending matter in Denver Broncos Country. Lance brings plenty of intrigue, as an uber-talented, young, and athletic quarterback, but he also carries some concern too.
As I watched the film on the potential top 10 selection, it was a bit tough to form a complete evaluation due to the lack of sample size. His national availability playing at an FCS school also made it a bit more difficult to pull up, in comparison to a Justin Fields, who was on national television every week.
What did the film study of Trey Lance reveal?
Lance was an FCS starting quarterback for a marginal, yet productive 17 games in his collegiate career. In 2018, he only attempted one pass the entire season, and in 2020, he only had the chance to play in one game, as the Bison postposed the season amongst the COVID outbreak. His only true season as a collegiate quarterback came in 2019, where he made the best of his lone opportunity,
During the course of 2019, the 6-foot-4, 224-pound redshirt freshman threw for 2,786 passing yards along with 28 passing touchdowns and an astonishing zero interceptions. Certainly a 28:0 TD: INT ratio is not sustainable, but what could be the for the perennial top-ten pick?
Before I lay out what I think he will become in this league, I would first like to break down what I saw by watching what film I could find.
First things first, Trey Lance has a cannon and he possesses the ability to make what scouts and general managers label as “every throw.” As I was watching his film, the first thing that came to mind was how quickly the ball just “flicked” out of his right arm. Once you are a professional football player, the windows get tighter and the separation gets smaller. Lance’s arm strength will be beneficial for him as at times, once the ball was released from his fingertips, it would be difficult to find until it was in the receiver’s hands.
Not every quarterback can snap the ball out like that. This trait is important in the National Football League as there are pass rushers at the next level that are just as athletic and quick as Lance, Broncos Country has happened to have one of the best from the past decade.
Someone like Von Miller who has that natural “dip and bend” ability, who can get under an offensive tackle within a second creates issues for quarterbacks who have a slower and lower release. When Lance decided to release the ball, he rips it. This will help prevent pass-rushers like Miller from strip-sacks, as Miller once said that when he is going for a sack, he attacks the football, not the quarterback.
Diving deeper on this, with Lance’s quick release, I also noticed how he possesses the ball when inside the pocket. Whenever he drops back to pass, you notice how he keeps the ball high and grips it firmly with both hands. If a quarterback is loose or lackadaisical in the pocket with the football, the percentage of fumbling increases significantly. There is no stat for that, just knowing the game and being in love with it for the entity of my life, I can back that up.
On the side of each helmet, there is an “earhole”, and it is taught to keep the football at your earhole, and Lance was a repeat offender of this in the film I broke down. That is a good thing and shows that he is not forgetting the little things that can make a good football player, great. In the pocket, Lance proved that he knew how to take care of the football just by the way he would tuck it to his earhole.