On Saturday night, Chicago Bears cornerback Charles Tillman was given the 2013 Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year Award, according to a tweet from Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune. This award is given annually to the NFL player who graciously contributes his time to volunteer and charity work, as well as maintaining stellar play on the field.
Founder of the Charles Tillman Cornerstone Foundation, the cornerback provides resources to needy families and children across the nation. His foundation holds a variety of events to raise money and awareness for the noble cause.
On the field, Tillman is just as successful.
Despite only playing in eight regular-season games, Tillman was able to rack up 41 tackles, three forced fumbles, three interceptions and seven defensed passes. The 11-year veteran continues to be one of the league's most dominant cornerbacks each season.
Now, Tillman is slated to become an unrestricted free agent on March 11 after playing his entire career with the Bears.
I see Phil, the coaches, the trainers—I see everybody. Everyone is in good spirits, and it's good communication right now. I don't know [if I will reach the open market]. You think about it, but if it's meant for me to be back, I'll be back. If it's not, we'll move on. I don't take it personal because it's all business.
Could winning this prestigious award possibly allow Tillman to remain with the Bears going forward? It certainly couldn't hurt his chances.