During a 13-year NFL playing career that saw him participate in two Super Bowls and set Chicago Bears franchise records for career interceptions (36) and defensive TDs (9), Charles “Peanut” Tillman was a hard nut to crack on defense.
Starting in his rookie season with a game-winning INT in the endzone against then-Superfreak Randy Moss, Tillman left opposing wide receivers salty.
Tillman earned the nickname “Peanut” from his aunt because as a baby she claimed his body resembled the shape of a peanut. And 36 years after his birth, the National Peanut Board couldn’t be more thrilled, naming him the spokesman for its new Shell Out campaign.
“Does promoting peanuts make me a sell-out? No, but it does make me a shell out,” quips Tillman in the above video. “We want to know exactly how much people love peanuts by sharing how big of a Shell Out they are on social media.”
While we’re nuts for peanuts, we asked Peanut what he thinks about the Bears’ moves in free agency, if the organization can succeed while the McCaskeys are still in charge, and about playing in the Super Bowl. Listen to the full interview:
Do you just sit back and laugh at the personnel moves the Bears make? And I don’t just mean signing Mike Glennon to a ridiculous contract, but moves like trading Greg Olsen for peanuts?
(Laughing) It’s been a little nutty for sure. A lot of it is not…I wouldn’t say it is the McCaskeys. I think whoever they hire to make those decisions, whether it be the GM or the head coach, I don’t think George or any of the family members know how to run things coaching-wise. So they give all their discretion to whoever they hire as GM or head coach to make those decisions. And obviously, to be a good employer or supervisor, they do the best that they can to try and support those decisions.
What are your thoughts on the signing of Glennon?
I will say this about Glennon — and I say this in a good way — he could be this year’s Brock Osweiler. I don’t know him, haven’t really seen a whole lot. He’s got a total of 18 career starts. I’m not saying that in a bad way, I’m saying that as far as experience. He is this year’s Osweiler in terms of a backup QB making a good chunk of money from what he was making last year. That said, I hope he goes out there and just kills it. Hopefully, he’s the guy who can take them to the promised land. Bears fans deserve it.
You played in two Super Bowls — the first during the 2006 season with the Bears, the second with the Panthers in 2015. Which was more special?
I’d have to say the Bears, because we had such a strong group of players, specifically on defense, that were working together for years with that common goal. And we all legitimately enjoyed each other — I still talk to guys like Lance Briggs, Anthony Adams and Brian Urlacher at least weekly. We really wanted to win that Super Bowl for Brian. You saw how the Ravens went out and won one for Ray Lewis during his final season. We felt like Brian deserved one, but we fell short.
Do you love peanuts so much that you would eat peanut butter for breakfast every day or name your dog Peanut Butter? The National Peanut Board wants to see and hear it all and are encouraging people to show their love for peanuts on social media with the hashtag #ShellOut.
The Shell Out campaign lasts for three months, starting on March 15 and running through June 15. You can view more Shell Out videos on the National Peanut Board’s website, NationalPeanutBoard.Org. Also, check out more hilarious Shell Out content on the NPB’s Twitter and Instagram handles at @PeanutsHere.