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News » Chargers star LB says 2nd knee ligament torn

Chargers star LB says 2nd knee ligament torn

Chargers star LB says 2nd knee ligament torn
Shawne Merriman returned to San Diego on Saturday with some troubling news on his injured knee.

The star linebacker says he has a torn lateral collateral ligament in his left knee to go along with the torn posterior cruciate ligament previously reported, according to the San Diego Union-Tribune.

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Merriman said doctors agree that he needs surgery to repair the damage.

"It could be career-threatening if I did (play)," he said. "It's a possibility. That possibility is still open."

A course of action has not been decided. Merriman, who will consult with a doctor in Miami early next week before making a decision, has been told reconstructive surgery would sideline him for the entire 2008 season. Another option is a less-invasive surgery that would allow him to play at some point in the season.

"They've all said the same things about the injury," Merriman said. "(They're) kind of surprised that I've been playing with it up to this point."

Merriman, a three-time Pro Bowler, felt pain in his knee after playing in San Diego's preseason game on Aug. 9.

"I'm just trying to get an opinion on what I need to do, how bad the injury is and if I can do anything to play. I'm going to do the best I can to get back on the field and get ready for Carolina," Merriman told the Union-Tribune.

If the ligament is severely torn, he'll undergo season-ending knee surgery. If the tear isn't significant, Merriman could play through the pain and be ready for Week 1 against the Carolina Panthers on Sept. 7.

"That's first and foremost," Merriman said. "That's what I want to do. That's why this decision is even out there still and not already made, because I want to play, period. The question is what should I do? How long should I play with it?

"It's a thousand different options at this point and I'm just trying to make the best one."

Merriman left the team Tuesday to seek opinions from other doctors, a trek that included a visit with renowned surgeon James Andrews on Wednesday in Birmingham, Ala. He said he is seeking as many opinions as he can for a reason.

"I'm just trying to make the best decision possible for the team and for my career," Merriman said.

Coach Norv Turner has remained optimistic all week that Merriman will be able to play this season. He again expressed that hope Saturday.

"Right now, in talking to him, his mind-set is he's doing everything he can to get ready for Carolina, our opener," Turner said. "He just wants to get a little bit more information on his knee."

Merriman has made the Pro Bowl in each of his three NFL seasons. He has 39 ½ sacks in that span, more than any other NFL player.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this story.

Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:http://www.foxsports.com
Added: August 24, 2008

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