NDSU’s Hedberg compares QB Lance to Kyler Murray

North Dakota State University redshirt sophomore signal caller Trey Lance is currently training in Atlanta in preparation for the 2021 NFL Draft.

The 20-year-old former Bison quarterback declared for the draft after his second year as the Bison starter was cut short due to the coronavirus. In 2019 as a freshman, Lance threw for 28 touchdown passes without an interception, captured both the Jerry Rice and Walter Payton Awards, and helped lead NDSU to their eighth national championship victory in nine seasons.

Meanwhile, his former college position coach Randy Hedberg spoke with The Minot Daily News on Friday via telephone to discuss Lance’s readiness for the NFL.

According to Hedberg, who also was a former standout passer for Minot State University, he believes the precocious Lance possesses a host of attributes that will give him a great chance to succeed at the professional level.

“Well for one, he’s a well built young man who goes about 6-foot-3 or 6-foot-4, and weighs about 225 pounds,” Hedberg says of Lance. “He’s a very athletic kid with a strong, quick arm, and a lot of upside. I also think he has a very good working knowledge of the game, and that will take him a long way in the NFL.”

NDSU’s system features a diverse offense that requires the quarterback to set blocking protections while also recognizing pre-snap coverages. Because of Lance’s success in this environment, Hedberg states his former pupil will be very adaptable to virtually any team he is drafted by.

“Our quarterbacks have to memorize a lot of different looks, and they have to process information very quickly, and that is something NFL teams are looking for,” the coach adds.

In addition to his physical attributes and high football IQ, Hedberg also noted that Lance has a commanding presence both on and off the field.

As a result, the NDSU quarterback coach believes Lance will be able to quickly command the respect of his future NFL veteran teammates.

“When Trey walks into a room, you notice him immediately. I feel that is going to be a big asset for him early on because he is only 20-years old, and he will be among teammates that are 10 and 15 years older than him. As a quarterback, you have to prove to others that you can command a situation, and Lance can definitely do that,” he said.

In terms of improvement, the NDSU football mentor believes Lance needs to further refine his ball security skills, as well as his anticipation of throws. Work ethic wise, Hedberg mentions Lance as one of the most physically improved players on the team once the Bison returned from their nearly three month COVID-19 lockdown, which lasted from mid-March until June 1.

When asked for an NFL comparison, the Bison coach stopped short of comparing Lance to former Indianapolis Colts Pro Bowler Andrew Luck. However, Hedberg did say Lance’s running style reminds him of current Arizona Cardinals starter and former Heisman Trophy winner Kyler Murray.

Last year, Lance compiled 1,100 yards on the ground to go with 14 rushing touchdowns.

“He is a real tough runner in the open field, athletic and physical, and he will not go down easily, that’s why I liken him to Murray,” the NDSU coach continues.


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