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SI.com: Critics of Merriman should zip it

Discussion in 'Chargers Fan Forum' started by boltmanbz, Aug 29, 2008.

  1. boltmanbz

    boltmanbz Well-Known Member

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    http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2008/writers/ross_tucker/08/29/tucks.takes/index.html

    Tuck's Takes: Critics of Merriman should zip it; Warner is right move



    With no football to play for the first time in 18 years, former pro Ross Tucker is passing the time reading about his favorite sport. What follows are a few links to NFL-related articles he found and his take on them.
    It's his life

    I am sick and tired of reading and hearing all of the media pundits and fans denigrating Shawne Merriman for his decision to play football in 2008 despite reportedly having PCL and LCL tears in his knee. I wonder if some of these folks are the same ones who were criticizing LaDainian Tomlinson and questioning his toughness when he could not play in the AFC Championship Game loss to the New England Patriots last season.

    Tomlinson is beyond reproach in my book and his toughness and productivity the past seven years speak for themselves. But I digress. The reason I am so angered by theoverwhelmingly negative response is very simple: It is Merriman's life and ultimately his decision and he can do with it what he wants.

    I highly doubt I would be making the same decision if I were in Merriman's shoes. Though I don't exactly know his personal health situation, if the reports are accurate, he is risking both the rest of his career as well as his long-term personal health by playing with torn ligaments in his knee. It could greatly impact his next contract, a contract that would potentially be record-breaking if Merriman returns in 2009 and puts out the type of performance we have come to expect from him.

    But that is not the point. How I feel or anyone else feels doesn't matter. That is because it is a personal decision.

    Merriman is not some undrafted free agent from Podunk State who is just taking the team doctor's word for it and playing on a bum knee. In fact, if you include the Chargers team orthopedic, Merriman met with five different doctors before coming to this conclusion. He is making this decision with his eyes wide open. He understands the potentially adverse consequences and is willing to live with them should it get to that point. He understands he will have to get surgery at some point. He's just not ready for that point to be right now, on the cusp of a season opener for a football team with legitimate Super Bowl aspirations.

    The reality of the game is player's play -- and play well -- through injuries all the time. That is just part of being a professional football player. Again, would I begin a season or try to make it through an entire year with an injury like Merriman's? Probably not, but I have played the last month of a season with a herniated disc in my back that was tremendously painful. It required surgery at multiple disc levels following the last game.

    Stuff like that happens all the time in the NFL, more than the casual fan would ever know. Did you ever notice how many players have off-season surgery?

    News flash: That means they played with injuries that required surgery, but they delayed that surgery until after the season. The difference in Merriman's situation is the regular season has not even begun yet and his injury has become very public.

    And therein lies the real problem. It is not a public decision. It's a personal one.

    One more note on Merriman. There is some speculation that players in the NFL will intentionally try to go after Merriman's knee to do him harm. I highly doubt that. I have never seen a player intentionally try to injure another player. The game is so fast it is nearly impossible for someone to have the wherewithal to consciously make that decision and then carry it out.

    That being said, Merriman is very well aware this is the National Football League and it is a serious business played by men who are providing a living for their families. He knows all too well he will be shown no favor, no mercy, when he steps inside those white lines. And that as much as anything is what probably made his personal decision such a difficult one.
     
  2. WyomingBoltFan

    WyomingBoltFan Well-Known Member

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    Finally someone in the press gets it. It's Merrimans decision all others butt out.
     
  3. rapscallion

    rapscallion BoltTalker

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    He gets it except for the part about (some) players not wanting to intentionally hurt others. He is either trying to white-wash the reputation of the NFL or is completely ignorant. And I don't think he is ignorant.
     
  4. WyomingBoltFan

    WyomingBoltFan Well-Known Member

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    I agree with you on that. All you have to do is watch the video where Nalan went for Igors knees in Denver, plus the cheap shots the Titans did against Merriman.
     
  5. AnteaterCharger

    AnteaterCharger Calibrating Bolttalk, Podcast by Podcast Staff Member Super Moderator Podcaster

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    the writer is a former player so that might be one of those things ;) kept in the fraternity
     
  6. boltmanbz

    boltmanbz Well-Known Member

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    i think its just good to see someone back up Merriman, im tired of hearing all the bashing
     
  7. RM24

    RM24 BoltTalker

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    Best part of this article:

    :yes:
     
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  8. Charger Dave

    Charger Dave Dead account

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    As far as I am concerned, that was the best read of the day. :tup:
     
  9. Buck Melanoma

    Buck Melanoma Guest

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    Gotta agree. Maybe it's a fraternity "secret", but it happens.

    I don't want to see anyone hurt by an attempted cheap shot, but I'd LOVE to see Igor head-slap some punk again!! :lol:

    Yup. :tup:

    So far today. :tup:
     
  10. BajaBolt

    BajaBolt BoltTalker

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    As BR kept saying on last night's telecast, Merriman played with the same knee injuries in 5 games last year. One could argue that the scope he got during the offseason has made his knee better than last season.

    I still find his decision risky and wish he would have gotten reconstructive surgery in February, but obviously at that time they felt he could forego it and try and strengthen the knee. Now it got sore and Merriman (PLUS CONDON) went out of their way to try and see what needed to be done. I think the specialists are going to error on the side of caution, but Merriman did prove through 5 games last year that he could finish the games. If he goes down, I just hope it's not career ending.
     

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