By now the media has caught up to Lance on their big boards.They seems to be aware that most draft outlets have him as a QB to look out for so they know that he has first round talent, but I really doubt that they have a full grasp on what makes Trey Lance so special at the position First off it's the name. I don't think I could have come up with a better QB name if I tried. Second it is his talent at the position. So much has been made of his 28-0 TD/INT ratio in his lone season as a starter for the Bison. While that is impressive (incredibly impressive), it seems to be all the media can muster about him other than the fact he played in a non power 5 school. Well I have seen every snap he has taken and I have noticed several elite traits for him at the position.
Anyone who pays even the closest attention to Lance notices his howitzer for a right arm. When Lance throws a ball his pops out of his hand. His deep ball accuracy is quite good, but what I noticed was how quickly the ball gets from A to B on short to intermediate routes. He rifles it into windows that others simply cannot hope to close. That is why he has been so deadly and hard to intercept, if he picks you out the ball is rarely one that is able to be picked off. While I believe that that is the purest example of his arm strength, obviously his deep ball is the purest example of the power in his right arm.
His deep balls are precise. They float in the air with a tight spiral almost unilaterally and most impressively to me, they get to their target particularly fast. This indicates that ball spins in the air really fast and Lance does not need a vast amount of arc with his deep throws. Only the true talents at the position posses the arm to accomplish this and Trey Lance is one of these guys. What even more impresses me with with lance is not just his throwing ability but his athletic ability as well.
The NFL has evolved to a place where athleticism at QB is not so much an outlier or special occurrence but a necessity. Watching Lance it is clear to see that he is one of these guys. In the FCS Championship game, Trey Lance rushed 30 times so clearly the Bison trust him as a weapon there. Lance scored 14 times this season using his legs and routinely, that became the driving force behind why NDSU won every game they played last year.
His lateral agility is that of a wide receiver, but what is so clearly noticeable from Lance's game is his quick burst whenever he sees a rushing lane. He takes full advantage as to what the defense gives him up front and rarely are defenders able to reach him. Even more impressively, when they do reach him, they just seem to bounce right off. I haven't seen a QB shed tackles like this since Cam Newton. He is special. However, I do think this part of his game has benefited a lot from the lack of athleticism on defense in the Missouri Valley Conference. I think he has all the athleticism in the world, but he will not be shedding tackles and running by defenders in the NFL with the same ease as the FCS. Still, his athleticism is arguably the best in a very athletic draft class and all this combined manifests itself in what I find most valuable about him.
I have not seen a quarterback look this comfortable when the play breaks down in a long while. He seems quite decisive when he either will tuck and run or decide to scramble and look for a receiver downfield. It is all over the tape but Lance, with regularity makes some of the pretties throws on the run you will ever see. The play is never broken with the ball in Lance's hand. Time after time the pocket breaks down and he throws a cross field laser to a receiver for 30+ yards. He is simply special. One play in particular stand out from his game against Northern Iowa. The play was obviously a designed bootleg to his left and the play was completely broken almost at the snap. Trey was about half way between the hash and the end zone before he evaded a would be tackler and reversed the field making it back to the other hash mark to throw a laser shot to his receiver 20 yards deep all while not even flinching as a corner is looking to square him up.
These aren't rare either, they are routine. This is what contributed heavily to 28-0 TD/INT ratio. The play is simply never broken enough and he is never uncomfortable enough to be forced to make a bad decision. I am positive that if he played at a power 5 school, he would look just as good as he does at NDSU. I have not dropped my jaw looking at someone's tape like I did time after time with Trey Lance. However perfectly I see him, he does come with some concerns.
I really only have two major (minor) concerns with Lance. Number one is his quick nature to tuck and run. In today's NFL that may seem like a good thing, but personally, I want to see Trey look to scramble on a bad passing play than so quickly go for the run up the middle. I get it, he is faster and bigger than most LBs in his conference so it makes sense to take advantage. However, I want to see more looking to extend the passing play when the receivers are initially covered from him this year.
the second one is his intermediate accuracy. 28-0 makes the media scream how accurate of a thrower he is but I think that the stat is more representative of his poise than precision. Don't get me wrong, he is not inaccurate, in fact he is an accurate thrower. I just want to see more on the numbers throwing on intermediate routes than I saw last year. A lot of the time I saw receivers have to adjust a little too much to his throws, so I think that could use some fine tuning. But that really is a nitpick because I am confident that will improve. He is incredibly accurate under pressure and has the ability to fit the ball into short windows so fast that his accuracy almost doesn't matter.
Expect Trey Lance to rise up the boards even more so than he has already. Most boards have him as a top 10/15 prospect already going into the season but for me he is already the No.3 overall player on my board .(behind Lawrence and Sewell). He has all the skills and poise to be the kind of quarterback that teams gush about. I'll say it here for the record. The conversation right now is Lawrence or Fields with a heavy lean towards Lawrence. In my estimation, the conversation should be Lawrence or Lance with a lot of people with an eye towards Lance. I don't think it'll be a Lawrence and everybody else. It will be a 1 and 1a between the two.