Chargers Cut Ties With Shawne Merriman
Merriman was waived by the Chargers on Tuesday from their injured reserve list. The team placed Merriman on IR with a calf injury, along with a "minor injury" designation, meaning the six-year veteran had to be waived once he was deemed healthy. The move frees him to join another team this season rather than be tethered to the Chargers for the rest of the year on IR.
The 49ers, whose defensive coordinator, Greg Manusky, used to coach San Diego's linebackers, may be interested in Merriman, along with the Denver Broncos, who have struggled with their pass rush.
Merrriman's release ends a roller-coaster ride in San Diego.
He established himself as one of the league's elite pass rushers early in his career, wracking up 39 1/2 sacks in his first three seasons. In the three seasons since then, he's had only four, mostly due to injuries limiting his play.
Merriman served a four-game suspension in 2006 for violating the league's policy on performance-enhancing drugs. He still returned to register 17 sacks in the remaining 12 games that season.
But things soon began to go awry -- on and off the field.
He missed all but one game in 2008 because of a knee injury that required reconstructive surgery. Last season, he had four sacks in 14 games but was hampered much of the year with injuries (groin, foot, Achilles).
When the Chargers, after last season, extended a one-year tender rather than a longterm deal, Merriman held out of the team's summer workouts. He eventually rejoined the team midway through training camp and signed the $3.2 million tender, but injuries cropped up once again, first with his Achilles and then with his calf.
In this season's first five weeks, Merriman missed two games and parts of three others while dealing with Achilles problems and a calf injury. He had five tackles and no sacks before being placed on IR.
Merriman also had to deal with some distracting off-field issues. He was arrested in 2009 on allegations of battery and false imprisonment by reality star Tila Tequila. However, no chargers were filed in the case and the two eventually settled their respective lawsuits.
In other moves, the Chargers placed wide receiver Buster Davis on injured reserve because of a groin injury and they re-signed offensive tackle Adam Terry after releasing him last week.