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Chargers Release Shawne Merriman

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Getty Images
    Linebacker Shawne Merriman #56 of the San Diego Chargers works out before the preseason game against the Bears on August 14.

    Shawne Merriman will have plenty of time to hang out at night clubs and make cameos on TV, because he's not playing football any time soon. He's never playing for the Chargers again.

    The Chargers placed the oft-injured linebacker on Reserve-Injured with a calf injury and a “minor-injury designation (less than six-week injury)”, which means the six-year veteran must be released by the team when he becomes healthy.

    Merriman entered the league in 2005 and looked like he'd redefine the outside rush linebacker position. He won the Defensive Rookie of the Year Award and went to a series of Pro Bowls. But off-field issues (including a positive steroid test, a knee injury he neglected to have surgery on and missed an entire season instead of a few games, and an abuse accusation from reality TV personality Tila Tequila) quickly derailed his potentially Hall of Fame career.

    Once released, Merriman will be an unrestricted free agent, allowing him to sign with any team this season.