Saints rookie Marcus Williams promises he won't make the same mistake again after a costly blunder against the Vikings.
Saints safety Marcus Williams took responsibility for his last–play gaffe following a loss to the Vikings in the NFC divisional playoff game.
With just a few seconds remaining and the Vikings trailing by one point, Minnesota's Stefon Diggs vaulted in the air to bring down a pass from quarterback Case Keenum. Williams lunged past the legs of Diggs, taking out teammate Ken Crawley in the process. After regaining his balance, Diggs dashed to the end zone for a 61–yard score, punching the Vikings' ticket to an NFC title showdown against the Eagles.
"Man, it was just my play to make," Williams told reporters after the game.
"The ball was in the air. I didn't go attack it," he added. "And he came down and made a great play, and that's just on me."
It overshadowed a thrilling interception in the third quarter by Williams, that set up a six-play touchdown drive by the Saints to cut the lead 17-14.
Williams was in tears in the locker room after the game, but he still answered questions from reporters.
The rookie safety was adamant that if he were given another chance, things would play out differently.
"If the play happened different, I would just go attack the ball and make that play. I just gotta be that guy and go up and get the ball," he said. "As the safety back there, you gotta be the eraser. And that was my job."
"You can't let it beat you down. I'm gonna take it upon myself to do all that I can to never let that happen again," Williams told reporters. "And, I mean if it happens again, then I shouldn't be playing."
Despite the blunder, Williams had the support of his team after the game.
"Look, he jumped and went for the tackle," Saints head coach Sean Payton said. "He's played well for us all year. It was a timing decision. Obviously he'd like to have that back, but he's been a good player for us all year."
A second-round pick out of Utah, Williams started 16 regular seaon games for the Saints, finishing with 73 tackles and four interceptions.