Yesterday, the Monday Morning Quarterback's Robert Klemko published an interview with Chicago Bears cornerback Charles Tillman, and among other things Tillman talked about the best offensive player he has ever played against: former Colts wide receiver Marvin Harrison.
Here's Klemko's conversation with Tillman about Harrison:
THE MMQB: Who's the best offensive player you ever played against?
TILLMAN: Marvin Harrison. We played a lot of Tampa 2 with coach Smith, and I could never touch him, couldn't jam him. He was so quick, like a little rabbit. I missed every time. Hardest person I ever had to cover. And most people don't think that. Like, who would you have guessed I would say?
THE MMQB: Randy Moss or Calvin Johnson.
TILLMAN: Nope. Marvin Harrison. He was unstoppable. The best I ever played against. He made me look terrible.
Give the entire interview a read here, but for Colts fans the part about Marvin is the part that will certainly stand out the most. We mentioned earlier this summer about how Champ Bailey said something similar - that Marvin Harrison was the toughest wide receiver he ever had to cover.
In his career (1996-2008), Harrison caught 1,102 passes (3rd all-time) for 14,580 yards (7th all-time), and 128 touchdowns (5th all-time). He caught at least one pass in each of the 190 games he played in and he holds all of the major franchise receiving records with the Colts. Along with Peyton Manning, Harrison is part of the most prolific quarterback/receiver duo in the history of the league. In 2002 Harrison set a single-season record with 143 receptions, a mark that hasn't been closely approached before or since. He was an eight-time Pro Bowl selection and in eight consecutive seasons (1999-2006) he notched at least 1,000 yards and 10 touchdowns receiving. He was inducted in the Colts' Ring of Honor in 2011 and, after getting robbed of a first-ballot induction into the Hall of Fame last year he seems to be a lock to get in this year.
Tillman is a 12-year NFL veteran (all with the Chicago Bears) and has appeared in 156 career games, making 857 tackles, 3 sacks, 42 forced fumbles, 8 fumble recoveries, 36 interceptions, and 133 passes defensed (also scoring 9 touchdowns). His feelings about Marvin Harrison, which were echoed by Champ Bailey as well this past summer, are certainly not abnormal from defensive backs who faced off against the future Hall of Fame receiver. Marvin Harrison was an incredible player who was incredibly hard to stop, and defensive players haven't forgotten what it was like to try to cover him.