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Golden Nuggets: Lance shares how he had heated discussions with Warner that helped him improve

Your daily San Francisco 49ers links for Saturday, January 1, 2022

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San Francisco 49ers v Seattle Seahawks Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images

Happy New Year, everyone. We’ll see Trey Lance start Sunday. Who knows if he will start another game in 2022, but I’m excited to see how improved the 21-year-old is 2.5 months later.

Trey Lance discusses ‘heated’ conversations with Fred Warner that led to 49ers rookie’s improvement

“Yeah, we’ve had that conversation a couple times,” Lance told reporters. “Sometimes maybe more heated than others. I don’t necessarily want to say heated, but I’m a competitor. Fred’s obviously one of the best competitors I’ve ever been around. And for him to care, not only about the look they’re getting, but also my development, him kind of pulling me off to the side or maybe us shouting across the line of scrimmage, whatever it was.

“It’s kind of finding a happy medium between giving those guys a look, obviously, and finding a way to make myself better. Not necessarily finding a happy medium, but finding a way to make myself better while giving those guys the looks. And even if it’s throwing a ball that I necessarily don’t want to throw, it’s important for those guys, and obviously, I can get something out of it too. Finding a way to complete that pass.”

NFC playoffs: How 49ers clinch spot over final two weeks of season

“If the Niners do what the [Los Angeles] Chargers couldn’t do last week, if they do get this win, their playoff chances are going to jump, according to our model, over 90 percent, into the mid-90s (94 percent),” Kornacki said.

Still, Kornacki said the PFF model gives the 49ers an 87 percent chance of making the playoffs.

Should the 49ers Extend Deebo Samuel this Offseason?Deebo Samuel is eligible for a contract extension starting this offseason as he enters the final year of his rookie contract with the 49ers.

The Niners need to get this deal done soon - largely because of the upcoming wide receiver market.

This offseason, receivers such as Davante Adams, Chris Godwin, Allen Robinson and Mike Williams will be unrestricted free agents.

Adams likely will reset the market – currently the highest average annual salary for a receiver is DeAndre Hopkins at $27.25 million per season. The other receivers won’t reset the market, but will raise the value of the average top receiver contracts.

John Lynch believes 49ers have a starting corner for years in Ambry ThomasAmbry Thomas was supposed to have more time before becoming a featured component within the San Francisco 49ers defense.

“I really feel convicted that we’ve got a starting corner for years to come,” Lynch said. “And that’s what we thought when we drafted him. We also knew that there was some inherent physical development that needed to take place, and I think that still remains. And we’re not going to fix that this year. He’s just got to kind of grow into his body a little bit.

“I told Ambry after that game against Cincinnati, ‘Man, you’re doing the hard part. You’re putting yourself in position.’ And now, it becomes a mentality. I probably used a bad example because I was talking Dennis Rodman with him, and he probably didn’t know who Dennis Rodman was. It’s a mentality [he needs to have]. ‘When that ball’s up there, that’s my ball.’”

49ers vs. Texans: It’s lining up for Trey Lance to make his first home start — 10 observations and our predictionsThe 49ers are still holding out hope that Jimmy Garoppolo can play against Houston, but Lance got all of the week’s first-team work.

Barrows: The Texans will be hyped and ready to play spoiler at the beginning of this one. Still, there is a massive disparity in talent, and you have to believe that George Kittle, Bosa, Trent Williams, Samuel, et al. will begin to take control early in the third quarter and that the Texans, with little to play for, will eventually yield. Is Lance truly more seasoned than he was on Oct. 10? We’ll see. But he’ll definitely have more help — Kittle, Jeff Wilson — than he had in his first start.

Lombardi: Same drill as the Atlanta game two weeks ago. The 49ers were set to face an overmatched opponent that time, so only a convincing win would suffice in upholding the legitimacy of this playoff push. The Texans simply aren’t good and the 49ers have a ton to play for. Heck, they might even be able to clinch on Sunday afternoon. This should be a convincing victory, even with Lance still being a wild card.