Let me start by asking a question. If touching the football, on a forced fumble before it goes out of bounds, changed the possession – how many forced fumbles would Charles Tillman have in his career? Answer: A lot! A whole heck of a lot! Unfortunately, Tillman will never get into the stat column for punching the ball out of bounds. But it is OK if the NFL doesn’t keep stats on “almost” forced fumbles – because, trust me, every opponent that faces the Bears the last few years (and next few years) will spend more time than usual during practice and meetings on ball protection. The importance of this goes way beyond his 10 forced fumbles in 2012.
“The more you guys talk about it and give away my secret, I feel it’s harder to get them… I liked it better when no one knew I did it. I could get it out easier.”
Charles Tillman to Chicago Tribune
On November 10, 2012 Tillman told the Chicago Tribune here, “The more you guys talk about it and give away my secret, I feel it’s harder to get them… I liked it better when no one knew I did it. I could get it out easier.” I didn’t hear Tillman make that statement, but I’d be willing to bet Charles was chuckling as he said it. Why laugh? Simply because the statement was not true. Tillman knows that this phenomenon doesn’t just make opponents aware, it gets in their head. Guys like Williams, Britt, Maclin, and C. Johnson don’t have a tendency to drop the football – but when they see #33 in the air coming at them like Superman it is In. Their. Head. Have you ever been walking down the stairs and someone above you says “Watch that last step, its a doozy”? What is the first thing you do? You slow down, watch your step, and sprain your ankle.
The video below is a nice fluff piece by ESPN’s Rachel Nichols. In this video Charles suggest his Peanut Punch is somehow divine. How’s that for getting into opponents’ heads?
The offseason is a great time to watch some of your favorite highlights. Check out this video below. The 5:30 mark of the vid is my favorite Tillman play in his career. The “Self proclaimed best WR ever” Randy Moss gets the full Peanut treatment in the endzone.
Charles Tillman 2012 Stats:
Tackles – 85
Tackles for loss – 2
Forced Fumbles – 10
Interceptions – 3
Touchdowns – 3
Passes defended- 16