Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Will Charles Tillman Free Agency Be A Repeat of Urlacher?

In what is becoming an annual event at Halas Hall, the Chicago Bears have a decision to make with one of their star defensive players.

Last year, they had to make a tough decision on Brian Urlacher. They decided to give him an offer that he thought was beneath him. He rejected it and decided to retire (since there were no other offers).

This year the decision is with cornerback Charles Tillman.

Tillman has played his entire 11-season career with his hometown team. He played in two straight Pro Bowls before injuries cut this past season to only eight games. He will be a free agent and this will be his last contract, assuming he is offered one.

The situation with Urlacher got ugly. He was hurt with the Bears’ offer, actually calling it insulting. He has spent the past season and postseason bashing Jay Cutler, Phil Emery and just about anyone he thinks is involved with letting him or Lovie Smith go . He is mad and is letting everyone know it.

Will the same occur with Tillman?

I believe Tillman’s situation will be different. Tillman already guaranteed he will retire as a Bear. Of course, Urlacher retired as a Bear and we see how that is working out.

One reason the Tillman situation is different is because Tillman is still effective. Yes, he was injured this season, but in the previous two seasons he was a Pro Bowler. He can still be effective, while it was obvious Urlacher was on his last leg (literally), he just could not accept it.

Another reason I believe Tillman will be different is because he said so himself.

“I’m just trying to make the best decision, and hopefully the Bears do, too,” he said. “If I get to free agency, so be it. If I don’t, so be it. It’s nothing personal. It’s a business. It’s a process.”

Tillman also said that if he did part ways with the Bears, there would not be any hard feelings and the situation would be completely different from Urlacher last year.

However the case gets resolved with Tillman, it will be amicable. Tillman envisions his relations with the Bears to be more like that of Richard Dent, who was welcomed with open arms, even though he left and played with the Colts and 49ers.

Tillman will not want to be associated with a repeat of the Urlacher situation. The fans do not want that either and hope it does not happen.


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Tags: Charles Tillman Chicago Bears

  • Big Swede

    There is one OBVIOUS difference between Tillman and Urlacher, and a BIG reason Tillman won the NFL Man Of The Year award and Urlacher has never even been nominated. It’s called class. Tillman’s got it, Urlacher doesn’t even know what it is.

    It is very immature for Urlacher to run around badmouthing the Bears like a crybaby because they refused to continue paying him millions of dollars when he was no longer earning it. He should have acknowledged that fact when he realized NO OTHER TEAM WANTED HIM EITHER. Instead, he takes shots at the team that made him a multi-millionaire. What a goof!

    • Daniel Michaels

      Urlacher may not have been physically able to play as he had in the past, but his presence and leadership is undeniable. How do you think Bostic would have done if Urlacher was there to mentor him?

      • Big Swede

        We’ll never know because, as in the past, he put himself ahead of his TEAM (remember when he forced them to renegotiate his contract?).

        The Bears offered him more money than anyone in the NFL last year, and he COULD HAVE mentored Bostic AND Greene. But he chose to turn his back on the team and take pot shots at them instead.

        He’d be wise to pay attention to Brett Favre’s legacy with the Packers. He’s quickly becoming the same bitter, washed up FORMER hero that fans are growing tired of.

  • Dave

    Big Swede, You nailed on the head. Tillman has a ton of class, Urlacher not the case.