If Charles Tillman didn't quite look himself at times last season, it's because he wasn't.
The Bears' left cornerback underwent surgery on his right shoulder Wednesday to repair torn ligaments he suffered in a Sept. 28 collision with Philadelphia Eagles tight end Brent Celek. Tillman wound up injuring his left shoulder two weeks later at Atlanta and missed the following game against Minnesota. The right shoulder was the issue and he played through pain for the final 11 games with the knowledge he needed surgery.
Tillman is expected to make a full return but this is not the first time he has had shoulder issues. Tillman underwent surgery on one of his shoulders following the 2005 season when he was suffering from frequent subluxations. He's known as a physical corner and has missed five games over the last four seasons. Provided he comes back 100 percent, it shouldn't be an issue.
An issue that doesn't seem to want to go away is the idea of moving him to free safety, something he addressed in the story. The only problem with that is in filling one hole on the defense it creates another, a new hole that could be even bigger. For the issues the Bears have right now without a free safety--do they win Super Bowl XLI with better safety play?--Tillman is one of the better cornerbacks in the NFC, a big, physical player who they need for matchups against top wideouts.