I would just hide around a corner and scare somebody, creep up around and scare them, but Peanut [Tillman] is probably the guy. Peanut is the guy to pull a prank on somebody. Not necessarily just at training camp. But we would jump people. We would go into [Brian] Urlacher's room, because he had a great day at practice and he was talking shit to us, and there'd be like five of us, and we'd go into his room and just hold him down so he can't move. There's nothing more degrading than being held down where you can't move and you have to submit, like, "OK, I'm sorry." And to make him apologize for no reason at all, but just because we could do it.
How many guys does it take to hold Urlacher down?
I mean, we're talking about some big guys. Urlacher's a big dude, but you get four or five guys like us, and everybody gets a limb, he's done. But if he grabs one of us, if he grabs a little guy, then we might be in trouble and we might have to back off. But he was in bed most of the time by 10 o'clock, so we had to get him early. Right after meetings.
But it was fun. We had fun doing everything. Peanut's probably the biggest prankster. Double A [Anthony Adams] would probably get in a little on that, but Double A was more just funny than a prankster. But Peanut would wait in your room and scare the hell out of you. He'd do that. Not many people would do that. Because you might get punched, you know? [Laughs.]
Hillenmeyer said that Tommie Harris once rubbed Tiger Balm in his jock strap.
Oh yeah. That stuff, I didn't get into, because I didn't want anybody to do it to me. I didn't want to come in and have Icy Hot in my helmet. But I've seen people do it. Most of that stuff is done to rookies who don't act right, or they don't want to carry pads, or they don't want to do something, whatever it is. If I ask you to do it, you should do it. If not, we're not going to beat him up. We might tie him up and put him in the cold tub.
Tie him up and put him where?
Mark Bradley got that. Everybody got together and tied him up. But you had to kind of sneak up on Mark, because he was fast. He would take off running. So we had to sneak up on him and corner him, and yep, tied his hands up, tied his feet up, and put him in the cold tub for about 15, 20 minutes. He's freezing. He can't get out. So yeah, we would do that stuff. We wouldn't beat anybody up, but we'd make 'em pay that way.
Is there anything about training camp that you miss?
It would just be hanging out with the guys. Other than that, not really. I don't miss being sore. I don't miss having to go from 7 in the morning until 10 at night. I don't miss that. But football in general. If you love football, then you miss it.
But practices I loved. I had fun at practice. So it was just the soreness that came from it. The injuries. If you tweak something, you don't stop practice. You have to go through it and let it heal on the way. You can't stop. You have to keep going.
I hear a lot of people outside of football who want to change football. They want this to change, they want that to change. Most of those people haven't even played football. So football isn't for everybody. And I think that we try to make it be for everybody. If you can't play it, don't play it. But don't try to change the game that we absolutely love to do and we take full responsibility for when something happens. We know what could happen. But that's what makes us different, because we're willing to take that risk and go out there and put on a show anyway.
Jack M Silverstein is a RedEye special contributor. Say hey @readjack.Want more? Discuss this article and others on RedEye Sports' Facebook page.