Former Falcons wide receiver Roddy White was not happy with new 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan for his play calling late in Atlanta's 34-28 overtime Super Bowl LI loss to the Patriots.
“I’m glad I wasn’t a part of that team because I probably literally would’ve fought him,” White said on the "We Never Played the Game" podcast, according to the Atlanta Journal Constitution.
White, who was a four-time Pro Bowler in Atlanta, lost $40,000 betting on his former team while watching the game in Las Vegas.
“You destroyed a dream for a city,” White said on Shanahan. “It’s bigger than me. The city of Atlanta needed that championship and you had it. Arthur Blank needed that championship and he deserved to win that game, with everything he’s been through. It was finally our time to win and it just hurt me that we didn’t get it done.”
What particularly set White off was Shanahan's decision to not play it safe late in the game. Atlanta was once up by 25 points, 28-3, in the third quarter, but then the Patriots came marching back. Instead of going to the ground, Shanahan kept airing it out and a late sack plus an offsides put the Falcons out of field-goal range that would have put them up by 11 points with 3:38 left in the game.
“You have a kicker in a dome and he don’t miss," said White. "As a coaching staff, you’re on the headset. Nobody said, ‘We're going to run the ball three times.’”
White ended his career after the 2015 season, his only year with Shanahan as his offensive coordinator. He posted his lowest number of receptions and yards since his second year in the NFL.