The Bears listed Charles Tillman as questionable for this Sunday’s match-up with the Lions and star receiver Calvin “Megatron” Johnson. If Tillman is out, it would be a huge blow to the Bears defense as Tillman is one of the only defensive backs in the NFL that has consistently given Johnson problems throughout his career. Last year on Monday Night Football, Tillman held Johnson to 3 catches for 34 yards (on 11 targets). In their second match-up last year, Johnson was limited to 5 catches for 72 yards. To put that in perspective, Johnson averaged 8 catches and 132 yards per game against the rest of the NFL in his record-breaking 2012 season (122 catches – 1,964 yards).
Over the course of Johnson’s career verse the Bears, Johnson only has two 100-yard outings in 11 games. Obviously it’s not just Tillman that is shutting down Johnson as the rest of the Bears defense has chipped in, but Tillman comes the closest to matching Johnson’s size and physical play and without him, Tim Jennings, Isaiah Frey, & Zach Bowman will have their hands full.
On a brighter note, Tillman said “I’m good”, when asked today about his chances of playing Sunday. Coach Marc Trestman was also “reasonably optimistic” that Tillman would be ready to go on Sunday. Let’s hope so!