The Minnesota Vikings did an impossibly wonderful thing for San Francisco 49ers quarterback Trey Lance on Thursday, Aug. 18, during joint practice. The team went out of their way to arrange to have students and coaching staff from Marshall High School – Lance’s alma mater – watch their famous alum from the sidelines.
“Terry Bahlmann, the head football coach of Marshall High School, tells me there are 115 athletes, coaches and staff at today’s practice to watch alum Trey Lance and the 49ers practice against the Vikings,” NBC’s Matt Maiocco tweeted.
Vikings Went the Extra Mile
Regardless of Lance’s Minnesota homecoming, 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan said that he doesn’t plan on playing the second-year quarterback during Saturday’s preseason game.
“Right now, I’m not expecting to [play him], but we’re day to day with that,” Shanahan said. “We’ll see how practice goes tomorrow. There’s a chance he will, but [not playing him] was the original plan.
Which makes the Vikings’ kind gesture even all the more meaningful for Lance, who spoke about it on Wednesday, Aug. 17.
“I was excited, for sure,” Lance said. “I get to see my family, see some friends. But it’s work at this point. I come out here; these two days of practice should be awesome for us, and Saturday as well. … The Vikings, appreciate them, they actually got some buses from my high school team to come out tomorrow, so I get to say what’s up to some high school coaches and some teammates as well.”
The media made sure to capture some highlights of the practice.
“The Marshall high school football team arrived,” one person said.
“Marshall High Tigers lined up to watch Trey Lance (although I noticed they seemed more interested in the Viking offense,” the Athletics’ Matt Barrows tweeted.
Following practice, Lance met up with some family and friends on the sidelines.
High Praise From Former Coach
Lance’s former high school coach, Terry Bahlmann, even spoke about seeing the quarterback take the reins as starter.
“Trey Lance was obviously one of our top ones we’ve ever had,” said Bahlmann according to CBS. “It’s just sort of surreal that 10 years ago he was out here in our youth camp and now he’s a starting quarterback in the NFL.”
Bahlmann went on to give Lance some high praise.
“We knew we had a great football player then,” he said. “We didn’t know how great at the time, but people knew he was a special player.”
He also commented on his future role with the 49ers.
“He’s going to be the face of the franchise. He’s never going to embarrass the program. He’s going to give you everything he has from a time commitment and personality wise. He’s true to his beliefs and faith. He’s just a solid person that people want their kids to be like,” he said. “As he grows, he’ll give back and people will just appreciate everything he does.”
Does he have any advice for the North Dakota State product?
“Just block out the noise, be Trey, have fun, and do your thing. That’s the advice I’d give him,” he said.