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NFL.com believes the 49ers have the 3rd biggest Super Bowl window in the league

Is that too high considering Trey Lance only has two starts?

Atlanta Falcons v San Francisco 49ers Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

Gauging where the 49ers stand compared to the rest of the NFL will determine how aggressive they are this offseason. On paper, despite a few roster holes, San Francisco has one of the most talented rosters in the NFL.

The Niners could add a star free agent cornerback or make a few splashes this offseason to only strengthen their roster. NFL.com’s Adam Schein believes the 49ers have the third-biggest Super Bowl window in the league:

The 49ers are ready to roll — if they can just get more impactful production from the quarterback position. In a related note, while you were reading that sentence, Jimmy Garoppolo threw another facepalm-worthy pick. OK, that was a low blow. Garoppolo has won a lot of games ... just not the Super Bowl. Wait, isn’t that what this column is all about? The writing’s on the wall: The Jimmy G era is over for the Niners. In 2022, San Francisco is TREY AREAAAA!

I am obsessed with Trey Lance’s raw talent. That said, I’m concerned about his inexperience and inability to beat out Garoppolo this past season. Talking to Deebo Samuel on radio row last week, though, San Francisco’s do-everything playmaker thinks Trey can be a star. The tools are definitely there, Samuel told me, it’s just about Lance learning how to be a pro. That wasn’t a knock, either: Samuel said it’s the light that goes on for players between Year 1 and Year 2. Not to mention, Lance is still just 21 years old. Deebo thinks Trey will be ready to answer the bell in September.

The Niners are stout everywhere else. Samuel became a true gamechanger in 2021, fueling Kyle Shanahan’s offense. Defensively, San Francisco boasts a rugged front seven headlined by a premium QB hunter in Nick Bosa. The NFC is wide open, too.

I think we are going to be enamored with some of the flash plays Lance has next season:

Those are clips from practice this past season. Yes, it’s just practice, and Lance is freelancing, knowing the defensive line cannot hit him. Still, you get an idea of what he’s capable of.

Lance was never going to beat out Jimmy as a rookie, so that’s a bit unfair. Also, his inexperience can be made up for with the type of plays you see above. There will have to be a trade-off for the rookie mistakes and highlights.

But, as Samuel said, the jump from Year 1 to Year 2 is where we see the most growth from players in any sport. After seeing what it’s like to go against an NFL defense, Lance having a full offseason will be invaluable for his development.

The 49ers are ranked this high because of their stars, though. Deebo Samuel, George Kittle, Trent Williams, Nick Bosa, Fred Warner, and Arik Armstead make up a deep core. You’d think players like Brandon Aiyuk take the next step with Lance under center.

Then, you have some potential pieces returning from injury in Mike McGlinchey and Javon Kinlaw. So there’s plenty of reason to be optimistic about the 49ers' future. And with Lance on a rookie contract, now is the time to take advantage of the Super Bowl window.