Trent Williams battled through a high ankle sprain to play for the 49ers in their NFC championship game loss to the Rams in January. If he had it to do over again though, he would’ve handed the keys to the left tackle spot to his backup, Colton McKivitz.
Williams on Tuesday spoke with reporters and said he shouldn’t have suited up for San Francisco’s biggest game of the year.
”Colton would’ve done a better job on two healthy ankles than I did on one,” Williams said via NBC Sports Bay Area’s Matt Maiocco.
Pro Football Focus gave Williams a 52.5 grade that day — by far his worst mark as a 49er. He also allowed five pressures, the most he’s allowed since Week 17 of the 2018 season.
McKivitz’s only start of 2021 came in Week 18 against the Rams in Los Angeles. He allowed two sacks and four pressures, but held his own as San Francisco clinched a spot in the playoffs with a victory.
It’s admirable that Williams is willing to step up and say in hindsight he should’ve had McKivitz take his spot. At the same time, the veteran’s competitiveness should also be lauded since playing on a high ankle sprain is exceedingly rare and presumably very painful. Williams was noticeably favoring his ankle during the game.
It ultimately might not have mattered who played left tackle for the 49ers in the NFC championship game. There were a lot of plays that didn’t go their way that had little or nothing to do with the offensive line.