I've got two words for those of you who are upset over Shawn Williams comments the other day - Shut. Up. This is football, not a segment of The View.
Let me tell you how this plays out: 1) the defense under-performs and looks like they're auditioning for a dance class instead of tackling ball carriers; they're too busy missing assignments to care much how their play is helping to determine the outcome of the game, 2) team meets behind closed doors and has an airing of grievances, 3) Kentucky 4) one player steps up to the mic and delivers the truth.
If you're okay with the team being 6-1 but not living up to their potential, then I can see how Williams' comments might make you feel uneasy. But don't let that cloud your judgment in that it NEEDED TO BE SAID. Your misplaced and misguided expectations aren't going to help beat Florida anymore than the effort we saw on the field last Saturday night.
If his comments about "pay for play" (which I'm sure were both written and read out of context) don't sit too well with you, then blame the coaches for not having the balls to say what NEEDED TO BE SAID. Don't blame Williams for taking it a step too far when we were five steps back to begin with.
If you're upset that he called out some players, I get that. It's makes me uncomfortable too. But you know what? This defense NEEDS to feel uncomfortable. They need to play with an edge and their own teammate just provided it. He offered it up on a silver platter when no one else could find the kitchen. If CRob knocks the shit out of Gilleslie Saturday and at the same time gets some frustrations out, great!! No one ever said these guys have to be best of friends. Again, he stepped up and said what NEEDED TO BE SAID. And it's already paying dividends in practice.
If you're chastising Williams for pointing fingers at other players when he himself has been prone to mistakes, please read his comments more carefully.
"We've gotta stop playing soft. We're playing too soft defensively," Williams said. "That goes for D-line, linebackers, corners, safeties. I don't know, we're not playing with the same attitude we played with last year. I don't know what it is." [emphasis added]
Translation - we're in this together, we're not doing our job and I'm here to hopefully help change that around.
And lastly, Coach Richt. You ought to be ashamed. Criticizing (even in the slightest) your own player for doing something you both handed him opportunity to do and should've done yourself...that's second rate. The first time this season that Williams was available to the media was Monday. You knew what was going to happen. If it was "more public than you would have liked" that's because whatever the coaches have been doing wasn't working and whatever was done behind closed doors failed.
I'm proud of every player that wears the G. Yesterday I was even a little prouder of Shawn Williams.