Charles Tillman knows his body best, Bears say
BY PATRICK FINLEY Staff Reporter October 21, 2013 9:14PM
Updated: November 23, 2013 6:23AM
Despite the Bears’ belief that cornerback Charles Tillman’s injured right knee had been improving over the last month, he still didn’t feel healthy Sunday against the Washington Redskins.
‘‘At some point he just didn’t feel right, and he felt that it was best that he not play the rest of the day,’’ general manager Phil Emery said Monday at Halas Hall. ‘‘He knows himself better than anybody. We completely trust him. And he’s a very important member of this club and our defense. And this week came at a very opportune time for him in terms of rest and recovery.’’
Tillman intercepted Robert Griffin III before leaving the game.
The Bears had been careful with Tillman’s knee, limiting him in practice even before it forced him to miss the New York Giants game two weeks ago.
‘‘If you looked up ‘professional’ in the dictionary, you’d open it up and there would be Peanut Tillman, because he comes ready to play,’’ Emery said. ‘‘If he can play, he will, and he’ll play at a very high level.’’
The Bears will look at available veterans, but Emery knows one player who won’t help to fill the void left by injured linebackers D.J. Williams and Lance Briggs: Brian Urlacher.
‘‘Brian’s retirement papers came in about three or four weeks before the season started, and he received termination pay,’’ Emery said. ‘‘So I would say that’s nil.’’
To create roster room to sign free-agent quarterback Jordan Palmer, pending a physical, the Bears released two players Monday: tight end Steve Maneri, who was inactive for the last three games, and practice-squad wide receiver Ricardo Lockette.
‘‘We just have to look through, once we decide which direction we’re going with linebacker, and how that affects the squad and balance in terms of special-teams players,’’ Emery said. ‘‘Then we’ll make the next corresponding moves.’’
Palmer started the Bears’ final preseason game before being released. He flew to Chicago on Monday.
This and that
The NFL suspended Redskins safety Brandon Meriweather for two games after he was flagged for helmet-first hits on Alshon Jeffery and Brandon Marshall.
Marshall said Sunday he wanted Meriweather suspended.
Meriweather, a former Bear, was cited as a repeat offender. He can appeal before Sunday’s game against the Denver Broncos.
‘‘He’s been playing that way for a long time,’’ Bears cornerback Tim Jennings said. ‘‘Now we’re trying to protect guys and look out for one another.’’
† Marshall checked out healthy after injuring his wrist Sunday, Emery said.
† The Bears would have used wideout Earl Bennett as their emergency quarterback, coach Marc Trestman said. They’ll continue to carry only two active quarterbacks, with Palmer as No. 2.
‘‘We’ll play the analytics there,’’ Trestman said.