Bears safety talks Packers, Cutler at Plainfield school
By Frank Vaisvilas Correspondent October 16, 2013 1:52PM
Chicago Bears safety Craig Steltz visits Timber Ridge Middle School in Plainfield. | Frank Vaisvilas~For Sun-Times Media
Updated: November 18, 2013 7:33AM
PLAINFIELD — Bears safety Craig Steltz was asked by a Timber Ridge Middle School student on Tuesday what’s the hardest team he’s played against.
“It would have to be the Green Bay Packers,” Steltz said. “They might be the hardest team, but they’re not the best team. We’ll be playing them soon and we will win.”
He answered questions drawn from a bucket in front of a student assembly during his visit.
The school was selected as the state winner of the NFL’s and Midwest Dairy Council’s Fuel Up to Play 60 Activity Scavenger Hunt, which has the goal of preventing childhood obesity.
Students won the Steltz visit by challenging teachers and other students in several activities and other exercises such as building a human pyramid.
“It’s days like this that make this job so important,” Steltz told the students during his visit.
Steltz also was asked if quarterback Jay Cutler is a funny guy. He said Cutler is funny in the locker room, but come game time it’s a different story.
“On game day, he’s very intense as quarterbacks are,” Steltz said.
Students also learned that Steltz prefers the Cubs over the Sox and his favorite Gatorade is orange. Steltz also gave some advice to students, such as telling them that breakfast is the most important meal of the day.
“Don’t go to school on an empty stomach,” he said.
And Steltz participated in four activity challenges with groups of students during his 45-minute visit.
They included a shuttle relay, throwing a football through a target, sitting on a balloon and musical chairs to the Bears fight song.
Before he left, Steltz signed footballs for a few students who earned recognition through the school’s “random acts of kindness” program.
And he added his autograph to the school’s football alongside the autograph of Bears wide receiver Earl Bennett who visited the school last year after students won the Play 60 challenge previously.
Steltz said he hopes many more Bears players will add their autographs as students continue to win in upcoming years.
“It went awesome,” said Timber Ridge physical education teacher Morgan Nichol, who introduced the program at the school last year and runs it with physical education teacher Linda Reynolds. “He was so much fun.”