Shutdown Corner - NFL

Championship Sunday’s five least valuable players

See Sunday's five most valuable players here.

Kyle Williams, Wide Receiver/Punt Returner, San Francisco 49ers. You know what happened. It was a nightmare scenario for Kyle Williams and the 49ers, and unfortunately, it's putting a spotlight on some ugly turns of mind out there. There's not much to say about it, really. He made two huge mistakes, he knows it, and I'm sure he feels worse than anyone. You just hope he bounces back, has a great career and that this doesn't define him. He's got a lot of football in front of him.

Billy Cundiff, Kicker, Baltimore Ravens. Compassion notwithstanding, Billy Cundiff did pull-hook a 32-yard field goal that would've kept his team alive, and he does have to make this list. He did show some serious guts and character in the postgame press conference, though, acknowledging it and owning it. It's a little heartbreaking to watch. I suppose that cruel situations are just part of sports sometimes.

Michael Crabtree, Wide Receiver, San Francisco 49ers. Frank Gore and Vernon Davis probably would've welcomed a little bit of help against the Giants defense, but it wasn't going to come from Crabtree. He spent his afternoon in Corey Webster's hip pocket. If Crabtree wakes up in the middle of the night to pee, he's going to have the urge to ask Corey Webster for permission first. Crabs was the 10th overall pick in 2009. By now, it's not too much to ask that he be able to get open and make plays in a game like this. He needs to have a long talk with Vernon Davis about what it takes to realize one's potential.

Antrell Rolle, Safety, New York Giants. I'm sure he's not terribly concerned about it since he's packing for Indy at the moment, but it seemed like the Giants thought they wouldn't have to pay any special attention to Vernon Davis. That was not correct. Rolle couldn't handle him, and neither could Kenny Phillips. It's not Rolle's fault, really ‒ he just can't cover Vernon Davis one-on-one. He also can't turn water into Olde English or carve a 45-foot statue of John Oates. Such are the limitations of man.

Joe Flacco, Quarterback, Baltimore Ravens. It's not because of his play ‒ Flacco, even in a losing effort, was close to making the list of MVPs on Sunday. I'm worried about the guy's mental state. Not because he's got a bad attitude, or because he's doing something harmful to the team or anything of that nature, but after the game, he got all touchy again about what people think of him and how much credit he gets.

"Look at the film. You look at the film, you'll see how I played. I pretty much play the same way every week, so if you think I played better this week than in other weeks, I think you're wrong. This is the way I play every week, and I really don't care. I don't know if I ever will prove anything."

He pretty clearly does care, or he wouldn't keep bringing it up. The fact is that he plays in Baltimore, a city whose football heart is owned by Ray Lewis and Ed Reed. He may never be the show in Baltimore. And if that is what he wants, then focusing on what he needs to prove to people instead of focusing on how well he can play isn't going to help him get there.

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