On Monday, after having some time to digest both his performance on the field as well as the shameful aftermath of fans sending him threats through social media, San Francisco 49ers wide receiver Kyle Williams sat down with ESPN Radio for an interview to talk about what had transpired and had some pretty profound things to say in dealing with the changing landscape of communication between athletes and fans.
"It was kind of shocking," Williams said of receiving the threats. "I kind of had been forewarned before I even got to the point where I could check it. I was forewarned by some of my family members and some of my friends that were there to not to look at the Twitter and the Facebook because it was going to be pretty bad."
Williams acknowledged how blurred the lines are between athletes and fans now that fans have somewhat direct access to them due to social media. He also directed thanks to those who have supported him.
"True 49ers fans have come to my support although they realize that I made a mistake, just like I realize it," he said. "I made a mistake in a key situation, but people realize I've busted my tail all year and I think my teammates realize that, too. Things happen in the game of football and you've got to bounce back from it. You've got to realize that you've made a mistake and own up to it."
Have to give Williams credit for not reacting and keeping his head held high. But he was even a little shocked at how quickly his teammates came to his defense after the game.
"I was kind of surprised by that, actually. Just because I felt like I let everybody down in the locker room," he said. "Just to get the response that I got from those guys, everybody basically on the team, coming up to me and telling me they appreciated my effort and they knew I was trying to make a play. It wasn't all on me, we lose as a team and win as a team."