Someone, somewhere, online, made it a point to argue that Trent Williams is tipping plays.
This all stemmed from Week 1, when Bears rookie Dominique Robinson said he noticed a tendency in in the All-Pro left tackle’s stance.
Why did it come up this week? This guy tweeted about it:
Kyle Shanahan said Thursday he wasn’t concerned about it or aware of it.
“It definitely would be a big deal,” Shanahan said. “But I don’t study your viral videos, or whoever’s. I’m pretty good with Trent.”
Offensive Line/Assistant Head Coach Chris Foerster, who has worked with Williams since his days in Washington, discussed the situation on Friday. He said that there are times when Williams can be better about showing tendencies with his stances, and that it’s always a work in progress for most players.
“Trent’s always conscious of it,” Foerster said. “So yeah, there are times when, and again, not counting third downs and empty backfields, where it’s obviously passing situations, we’re always monitoring to see where he is. And he’s always working on it.
“I mean, sometimes it’s just getting a situation where you start getting your stance, you realize what you need to do to get your job done demands that you just say, ‘Yeah, whatever, I gotta get my job done.’”
Former NFL tackle George Foster chimed in on Twitter to break down why Williams’ stances could indicate a play tendency, but are necessary to be effective, especially in the 49ers’ offense.
Essentially, even if you know the play, you still have to beat Trent Williams.
Williams, who is a future Hall of Famer, responded to the claims of play-tipping on Friday.
He dismissed the notion, saying that defenders might be able to figure out if it’s run or pass based off of a stance, but explained why that’s not all that helpful:
I mean, yeah, it’s pretty, pretty nonsense. I mean, when you think about it, if you just think that football is as simple as knowing if it’s a run or a pass, then you kind of dismiss the knowledge that you have to have to compete at a high level.
Just because you know it’s a run don’t mean you know what type of run. We just installed 50 runs with six different looks, each run. So, I mean, I can show you run all day. Do you know which 50 runs we’re running?
There’s plays where we want it to look like run and we’re passing it. There’s plays where we want it to look like a pass and we’re running it.
So if you’re looking for me to tell you everything, then I can manipulate you, which is why they don’t look at us that much, as much as you guys think. It’s never been that big of a deal on this side.
The whole situation is a bit odd, given, again, that we are talking about Trent Williams, and a 49ers offense that has moved the ball very well. The issue has been in the red zone, and the debate about Williams’ play tipping doesn’t focus on that area.
Until Williams stops producing like one of the best left tackles in football, it might be time to put this one to bed.