However, after several long days in the sun at training camp, Kittle has warmed up to rookie signal-caller Trey Lance and can’t help but admire the raw talent that he has witnessed in the North Dakota State product.
“He has such a big arm and he can kind of make any throw,” Kittle said Wednesday during an appearance on KNBR’s “Papa and Lund.” “You guys have seen the highlights they post of him throwing off his back foot, 50 yards downfield, across his body. He has a big arm. He can make all those throws and effortlessly.
“He is a 21-year-old rookie who has a lot to figure out and he has a long way to go, we all do, but he’s playing at a high level right now.”
Just like everyone else, Kittle has been in “awe” of Lance’s ability to make the transition from the collegiate level look so smooth, but that’s not what has really impressed him.
ALL the latest 49ers news straight to your inbox! Join the Heavy on 49ers newsletter here!
Kittle on Lance: ‘He continuously makes plays every single day’
Throughout training camp, we have talked about the importance of Trey Lance gaining his teammates’ and coaches’ trust. With that comes the ability to stay consistent, which according to Kittle, Lance has been able to do and it’s been extremely impressive.
“He continuously makes plays every single day,” Kittle said. “He usually doesn’t make the same mistake twice, and if you cannot make the same mistake twice, you’re doing something right. I enjoy watching Trey play, I enjoy watching him use his legs a little bit. I like watching guys who enjoy playing football, and you can tell how much he loves it and how much he wants to be good and better every single day.
“I appreciate that from him because you get a great mindset and attitude every single day.”
Kittle also recently made note that you wouldn’t be able to tell that Lance is only 21 years old and how he was never that mature at that age, but added the two would have been best friends and are certainly building a bond now.
Lance Will Make His NFL Debut on Saturday
Head coach Kyle Shanahan said Thursday that the plan for the preseason game against the Kansas City Chiefs on Saturday is to start Jimmy Garoppolo, then give Lance at least 30 snaps before handing it over to Nate Sudfeld and Josh Rosen.
Just like everyone else is, Shanahan is excited to get a sneak peek of how his No. 3 overall pick plays in a live game.
“I’m just excited to see him play like everyone else is,” Shanahan said via 49ers.com. “It’s fun to watch quarterbacks go out there for the first time. But I don’t get nervous for the person or anything like that because I think it’s fun to watch. I know no one is going to remember how his first preseason game is, but they will the next day. That’s all right.”
Catch the game Saturday night at 8:30 p.m. ET/5:30 p.m. PT.
- 49ers Trent Williams Reveals What Critics ‘Don’t Know’ About Jimmy G.
- 49ers’ Deebo Samuel on QB Trey Lance: ‘This Guy’s Got Some Balls’
- 49ers HC Kyle Shanahan Comments on Mike McGlinchey’s Weight