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Report: 49ers are focused on either Mac Jones or Trey Lance

The NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport is reporting that the Niners are narrowing down their focus to the two prospects.

Photo by Matthew Pearce/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The NFL world is waiting to see what the San Francisco 49ers do with the No. 3 overall pick, and it looks like the team is zeroing in on which QB prospect they will select.

We haven’t heard much information about which signal-caller the Niners favored leading up to the draft, but the NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reports that general manager John Lynch and head coach Kyle Shanahan are focusing on either Mac Jones or Trey Lance.

Some fans won’t like that Rapoport’s sources didn’t mention Ohio State’s Justin Fields. Most draft pundits believe Jones is the most pro-ready QB out of the three, but his detractors will point to the fact that the Alabama product’s ceiling isn’t as high as that of Jones and Lance.

Lance has all of the physical tools that scouts look for in an NFL QB, but the sentiment is that the former North Dakota State QB needs some time to develop and learn the pro game. At their media availability on March 29, Lynch and Shanahan said the plan is to keep incumbent starter Jimmy Garoppolo for at least the 2021 season. If the 49ers do go with Lance, he would have the opportunity to learn from the veteran.

The speculation about which quarterback the Niners will select has been at a fever pitch since Lynch made the deal land the No. 3 pick from the Miami Dolphins last month. Many NFL insiders — such as Peter King and Adam Schefter — have said their guess is that San Francisco will go with Jones.

Jones completed 77.4 percent of his passes for 4,500 yards, 41 touchdowns and four interceptions while leading the Crimson Tide to a national championship last season. He played with a ton of talented playmakers at Alabama, but some scouts are impressed with his accuracy and decision-making.

Lance, who played for Division I-AA school North Dakota State has been getting the least hype to be the Niners’ selection leading up to the draft. The 20-year-old only started one season for the Bison, which came in 2019. Lance threw for two touchdowns and ran for two more in North Dakota’s 39-28 win over Central Arkansas in an exhibition game that took place in October of 2020.

The NFL Network’s Daniel Jeremiah praised Lance during a recent conference call.

“He’s incredibly intelligent,” Jeremiah said. “I’ve spent time with him, and I’ve talked to a bunch of teams that have spent time with him and have been kind of blown away through the interview process with him. The character, the work ethic, all that stuff is exceptional.”

We won’t get our final answer until Thursday, but it looks like Lynch and Shanahan have whittled their list down to two.

Which QB do you prefer out of Jones and Lance?