Hufanga embraces friendly competition with ‘Incredible’ Lance, who originally appeared on NBC Sports Bayria
SANTA CLARA — Talanoa Hufanga made the biggest game of practice Friday when facing Trey Lance at training camp, but safety is highly respected for the 49ers quarterback.
In the second series of Lance’s 11-on-11 act, the 21-year-old quarterback attempted to complete George Kittel for the second time in a row, but what appeared to be a miscommunication. Hufanga jumped out of the way and picked up Lance, driving him back for what could have been a touchdown.
The entire defense went into celebration mode and Hufanga received congratulations from safety Jimmy Ward, cornerback Emmanuel Moseley, linebacker Fred Warner and defensive back coach Corey Underlin. Still, after practice, the security spoke with high praise for his partner.
“Man, that’s incredible,” Hufanga said. “Being around him, I get a chance to talk to him every day. With the intention he brings into the building every day, the first people out the last. Man only works. You see it on the field.”
Hufanga admits that there is healthy competition between them, but all with the intention of bettering each other on the field. It is challenging to face each other in every practice, but it is the perfect way to prepare for the start of the season.
“We always chirp at each other because we know what kind of day it is,” Hufanga said. “We want to work, the competition is amazing. He can do anything. Whatever throw you ask of him, he can do it. It’s also a testament to who he is. To be on the field just like him.” I am very grateful.”
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Safety coach Daniel Bullock spoke during the OTA about the focus being for the secondary in 2022, after finishing 20th in the league last season with an average of 1.2 per game. Hufanga has been seen with the first team on defence, competing for an early strong defense role alongside Tarvarius Moore and George Odum Jr.
If Hufanga keeps forcing takeaways, he could well see himself on the field next to Ward in Week 1 against the Chicago Bears.
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