Writers of Pro Football Prospectus 2008

13 Oct 2010

Shawne Merriman To IR

The Chargers have placed Shawne Merriman on IR with a calf injury. The tweet by Chargers PR man Bill Johnston notes that Merriman's been given the "minor injury" designation, which will require him to be released when he's healthy.

Posted by: Bill Barnwell on 13 Oct 2010

86 comments, Last at 18 Oct 2010, 9:44am by Dean

Comments

1
by slipknottin :: Wed, 10/13/2010 - 12:54pm

Not injured reserve. Reserve- injured.

Means the Chargers have to release him when he is healthy in a couple weeks, and he is free to sign and play with any other team at that point.

2
by Dean :: Wed, 10/13/2010 - 1:01pm

He hasn't been the same player since the steroid suspension. Go figure.

3
by psg (not verified) :: Wed, 10/13/2010 - 1:12pm

Seriously??? Is that it?? Why do people keep trotting this nonsense out??

He missed games 8-11 of the 2006 season. In games 12-16 of the 2006 season, he had 8.5 sacks (and then one in the playoffs). In the first 13 games of the 2007 season, he had 11 sacks. Week 13, though, the Chargers faced Tennessee and he was the target of a brutal and cheap illegal chop block which basically destroyed his knee.

The steroid result was before the 2006 season. He served his suspension long after the initial test and presumably was subject to other tests that time. The steep decline in his career just simply cannot be traced back to the time when he allegedly "quit the juice." You can, however, draw a straight line back to one of the many illegal, dirty plays that have since given the Titans the reputation they deserve.

Oh, yeah, but he's a moron who dated Tila Tequila so, forget all the evidence: ROIDS !!! ROIDS !!! ROIS !!!

7
by Dean :: Wed, 10/13/2010 - 1:33pm

1) I couldn't give a rats ass who he dates. The fact that you even know makes me wonder if you're spending too much time reading people magazine.

2) When you quit steroids, your body doesn't flip a switch. Your body slowly and gradually reverts to something approaching its natural state. The fact that his deterioration took time is only logical.

13
by Sjt (not verified) :: Wed, 10/13/2010 - 2:35pm

But he has been. The steroid result was in Spring 2006. The suspension was in the middle of 06. He still played well after that for at least a year, before having his knee blown up.

20
by Noah of Arkadia :: Wed, 10/13/2010 - 3:46pm

Since we don't even know for sure that he doesn't use steroids anymore, I have to agree with the others that the knee injury is a more likely reason for his decline. In any case, this sucks for him and Charger fans.

22
by sundown (not verified) :: Wed, 10/13/2010 - 4:38pm

"When you quit steroids, your body doesn't flip a switch. Your body slowly and gradually reverts to something approaching its natural state."
It doesn't take years for roids to wear off. You'd have been better off just saying "I guess I was wrong" than making yourself look even sillier.

44
by Dean :: Thu, 10/14/2010 - 9:10am

Depends on a lot of things. How much was he taking? How long was he taking them? What did he replace them with? What is his physiology?

Of course, you'd rather bury your head in the sand and forget that your hero turned out to be a juicer. That's OK.

50
by chemical burn :: Thu, 10/14/2010 - 1:53pm

Also, consider that the type of steroids he was using were the kind most useful in facilitating a quick recovery from injury. It's very possible he never had the body to play at the nfl without steroids propping up his health all along the way.

71
by Scott C :: Fri, 10/15/2010 - 5:16pm

No.

He tested positive for Nandrolone. Its effects wear off within SIX WEEKS. He would have lost ~25 pounds fast if he was really juicing with that substance.

Just google for it.

edit: If he was using steroids in small doses to help injuries recover faster, it would be different.

75
by chemical burn :: Fri, 10/15/2010 - 9:22pm

Wasn't he using steroids for quick recovery time for almost certain then? What would be the point of juicing to put on weight with a steroid that then drops a ton of weight the moment you stop?

39
by masoch (not verified) :: Thu, 10/14/2010 - 1:22am

1A) In psg's defense, the Tequila/Merriman saga was BIG news for a brief period of time last year after he was arrested for allegedly choking her. No Gossip rag reading required, it was a staple talk item on every sports show, and I'm relatively sure it received an Extra Point here.

72
by Scott C :: Fri, 10/15/2010 - 5:18pm

Extra point, front page of espn.com, etc. The fact that the responder didn't know about the situation speaks more to someone not paying attention to the NFL over the last few years.

Player X arrested for reason Y is news these days.

8
by BJR :: Wed, 10/13/2010 - 1:34pm

Not necessarily disagreeing with you here, but I'm guessing it's possible for the benefits of steroid use to linger for a while after an athlete has stopped using them......

5
by Spielman :: Wed, 10/13/2010 - 1:18pm

People always say this. However, part of his 2006 season was after the suspension, and his 2007 season earned a second team all-pro nod. There is a much greater dividing line in his career after the knee injury of 2007, rather than the suspension of 2006.

70
by RaxGrissman :: Fri, 10/15/2010 - 3:08pm

It's not a switch. You don't stop taking steroids and then suddenly become weak. It's like the other guy said. Say you work out every day, get ripped, and then decide you never feel like moving again. The muscles would slowly but surely disappear over time. This case would be less extreme, since Merriman was sure to be working out hard, but the peak his body could stay at was becoming weaker and weaker without the steroids.

73
by Scott C :: Fri, 10/15/2010 - 5:19pm

Nandorolone's affects on muscle DO switch on and off fast.

Not all steroids are the same.

4
by slipknottin :: Wed, 10/13/2010 - 1:15pm

Well I do think the roids are the reason he is so injury prone now.

42
by Neoplatonist Bolthead (not verified) :: Thu, 10/14/2010 - 8:43am

I blame Kevin Mawae, the Titans' C in 2007. He was never the same after Mawae jumped on his ankle in a SD overtime win in Nashville. He played out the season, thought he could get by without surgery, was wrong, lost a year of football, and just never really recovered.

78
by jay (not verified) :: Sat, 10/16/2010 - 12:13am

Totally agree. They also went after Rivers knee in the same game. Hate them.

84
by Jeff W (not verified) :: Sun, 10/17/2010 - 9:26pm

The Titans also took out Rodney Harrison's knee on a cheapshot block that kept him out for all of the 2006 playoffs (and I'm convinced partially contributed to the Pats' inability to cover tight ends against the Colts that year and led to that awful collapse). Sometimes I forget how much I hate the Titans

85
by Raiderjoe :: Mon, 10/18/2010 - 7:03am

just wrotoe about this play in other therad. then saw comment about it here.

had no dog in tits-pats fight. harrison deserved injury. on play befoore he jumped into pile after play
ended and twisted a titans player ankle. if remember correctly player was Bobby Wade. On next play Wade seek out harrison and injur e him. at least wade do it during play. harrison causue trouble after whistle blew. real bum he is.

somehow pates fans alwyas forget about play before harrison get injured.

86
by Dean :: Mon, 10/18/2010 - 9:44am

In the tits-pats contest, I'm cheering for tits!

6
by ChrisInCT (not verified) :: Wed, 10/13/2010 - 1:33pm

Someone will eventually say it, so....

Eli Manning trade still lopsided?

11
by djanyreason :: Wed, 10/13/2010 - 2:02pm

The Giants get Eli Manning, the Chargers get Philip Rivers and something with a non-negative value. So, yes, still lopsided.

21
by Noah of Arkadia :: Wed, 10/13/2010 - 3:47pm

lol Good, simple analysis!

12
by Sjt (not verified) :: Wed, 10/13/2010 - 2:33pm

You traded a QB with a 79.4 rating for one with a 96.7 (.1 from being best of all time).

Throw in a first round draft pick, who gave you 3 pro bowl seasons, and a few other draft picks.

Yes, still lopsided.

17
by Revenge of the NURBS (not verified) :: Wed, 10/13/2010 - 2:51pm

Others have already chimed in, but yes, it's still a clear win for the Chargers. Even if it had just been Rivers for Eli straight up, that would still be a win for the Chargers.

That said, I'm sure the Giants can feel happy about how it all turned out. After all, the point is to win the Super Bowl, and they did. So unless you think the Giants would have won multiple Super Bowls with Rivers (I don't), then it turned out fine for all parties involved.

38
by AT (not verified) :: Wed, 10/13/2010 - 11:13pm

The quarterbacks in question are each 29 years old! It's a bit early to declare an end to history and the issue settled, don't you think?

41
by Mr Shush :: Thu, 10/14/2010 - 6:33am

It's too early to say with absolute certainty, but five weeks into their seventh season in the league, I think it's reasonable to say that while Eli is a good quarterback and has had a nice career to date, Rivers is a substantially better quarterback and has had a better career to date. Something moderately peculiar would have to happen for Rivers not to have more value over his career as a whole.

45
by Monkey Business (not verified) :: Thu, 10/14/2010 - 9:28am

I think it's less lopsided in favor of the Chargers, but still lopsided.

Phillip Rivers - on the cusp of being considered "Elite".
Shawne Merriman - Few good seasons, on his way out.
Nate Kaeding - Few good seasons, now a complete head case.

Is Rivers a better QB than Eli Manning? Yes. By that definition, it's an upgrade.

Is Rivers also a punk bitch? Yes.

9
by Theo :: Wed, 10/13/2010 - 1:42pm

He's released because its designation is 'minor injury'?

Okay, so Pitssburgh could use a linebacker who's not in his 30s...
Who am I kidding.

10
by FireOmarTomlin :: Wed, 10/13/2010 - 1:51pm

Bulk him up to play situational DE.

----------
Men are more ready to repay an injury than a benefit because gratitude is a burden and revenge a pleasure.

14
by Raiderjoe :: Wed, 10/13/2010 - 2:39pm

Merriman oncw good but not anymore.

16
by FireOmarTomlin :: Wed, 10/13/2010 - 2:47pm

like the Raiders?

-----------
Men are more ready to repay an injury than a benefit because gratitude is a burden and revenge a pleasure.

24
by Raiderjoe :: Wed, 10/13/2010 - 5:30pm

Raiders are good now. 2-3 should be 3-2 but fine 2-3 it is but poiint is team good now. Will stay good. Will make playoffs. Porbably going to be 10-6 or better. Will win division.

27
by FireOmarTomlin :: Wed, 10/13/2010 - 5:56pm

If the Raiders go 10-6 or better I'll quit posting here.
You up for the other side of that?

-------------------
Men are more ready to repay an injury than a benefit because gratitude is a burden and revenge a pleasure.

29
by The Hypno-Toad :: Wed, 10/13/2010 - 6:09pm

You may wind up with a full-scale riot on your hands if you somehow force rj to stop posting here.

30
by Anon (not verified) :: Wed, 10/13/2010 - 6:36pm

I, for one, would cheer.

62
by The Ninjalectual :: Fri, 10/15/2010 - 8:41am

Why, because you don't understand him? Seriously, the guy knows more about football than you ever will.

32
by JIPanick :: Wed, 10/13/2010 - 7:08pm

I'll bring pitch-forks.

46
by ChicagoRaider :: Thu, 10/14/2010 - 10:58am

I've got the torches.

49
by Mr Shush :: Thu, 10/14/2010 - 12:06pm

I live within day-tripping distance of Whitstable: I'll bring Peter Cushing.

35
by greybeard :: Wed, 10/13/2010 - 8:23pm

If Steelers go 10-6 will you stop posting here? Given your nickname.

57
by FireOmarTomlin :: Fri, 10/15/2010 - 12:29am

If time travel is invented will you give your mom this quarter so she can afford a coat hanger?

-----------
Men are more ready to repay an injury than a benefit because gratitude is a burden and revenge a pleasure.

60
by greybeard :: Fri, 10/15/2010 - 1:33am

Classy as always.

63
by The Ninjalectual :: Fri, 10/15/2010 - 8:42am

This is offensive and disgusting. Fuck you dude. I hope you lose your hands in a car crash so you can never post here again.

36
by Raiderjoe :: Wed, 10/13/2010 - 8:27pm

No.

Not becaususe am not confident in Raiders. It is becauuse do not like to bet. Not good habit to get into.

56
by FireOmarTomlin :: Fri, 10/15/2010 - 12:28am

so you admit you're just all talk?

-----------
Men are more ready to repay an injury than a benefit because gratitude is a burden and revenge a pleasure.

59
by SteveW (not verified) :: Fri, 10/15/2010 - 1:31am

This being a blog and such, we're ALL all just talk.

61
by Raiderjoe :: Fri, 10/15/2010 - 6:42am

Remnember last year when Raiders beat steellers and you cried like a baby here? Taht gam kept steelers out of playoffs.

83
by Theo :: Sun, 10/17/2010 - 6:46pm

As a fellow steelers fan I must say... dude.
Can you up your classiness with .4 points please?

40
by Yaguar :: Thu, 10/14/2010 - 2:33am

I actually think that your visceral hatred of a coach who is 37-19 with a superbowl victory is more bizarre than raiderjoe's perpetual faith in his team.

48
by Noah of Arkadia :: Thu, 10/14/2010 - 11:29am

+1

51
by chemical burn :: Thu, 10/14/2010 - 1:56pm

I keep wondering what exactly Shah8 did to get banned for trolling that FireOmarTomlin isn't doing...

52
by zlionsfan :: Thu, 10/14/2010 - 2:35pm

oh, he did get banned? Well, he certainly worked hard to earn it ...

53
by tuluse :: Thu, 10/14/2010 - 7:23pm

He admitted he was trolling

55
by FireOmarTomlin :: Fri, 10/15/2010 - 12:26am

going 37-19 with essentially the same roster that won a SB is not the mark of great coaching.

the fact he had to go out and get McFadden back because his declared genius pick of William Gay as a #2 CB failed miserably (isn't Tomlin a DB coach originally ??? LMAO!!!!) really shows he has a clue. we won't even get to the fact he keeps Arians around, and couldn't even figure out last year that kicking off OOB would have been a better strategy.

KFTGDC.

------------------

Men are more ready to repay an injury than a benefit because gratitude is a burden and revenge a pleasure.

68
by Anonymouse (not verified) :: Fri, 10/15/2010 - 3:02pm

First reaction is that this is an awfully good win/loss record and a crazy comment. No coach has ever won over 60% of their games and tagged as a bad coach... but then thought of Barry Switzer.

Barry went 45–26 with a dominant team, resigning after a 6-10 season. Nobody accused him of being a great coach, and the Cowboys of the era had serious wasted talent. Tomlin's win/loss record is similar, but is the Steelers talent there?

So is Mike Tomlin the Steelers equivilant of Barry Switzer? An subpar coach that's wasting elite talent? I don't think so.

74
by Yaguar :: Fri, 10/15/2010 - 8:05pm

FireOmarTomlin would never point this out, but the Steelers were 8-8 in Cowher's last year; they won the Superbowl the year before that, and were generally regarded to be one of the less dominant Superbowl Champions. Tomlin did not take over a dominant team.

Let's compare the teams that Tomlin and Switzer inherited. Obviously, we don't want to include pre-Roethlisberger Cowher, or the Cowboys before Irvin broke out. Two to three years seems like a good amount of data. I've included both. A two-year window makes Cowher's Steelers look worse, while it makes Johnson's Cowboys look better.

Steelers in 3 years before Mike Tomlin: 38-15 (72%) One Superbowl
Steelers in 2 years before Mike Tomlin: 23-13 (64%) One Superbowl

Steelers in 3.25 years of Mike Tomlin: 37-19 (66%) One Superbowl

Cowboys in 3 years before Switzer: 43-13 (77%) Two Superbowls
Cowboys in 2 years before Switzer: 31-7 (82%) Two Superbowls

Cowboys in 4 years of Switzer: 45-26 (63%) One Superbowl

W/L record is simple, but rather reasonable for judging coaches. The numbers match your intuition: Switzer was given an all-time-great team, and he wasn't impressive with it at all.

Tomlin was given a great team, and kept it at roughly the same level that his well-respected predecessor had. Overall, his win/loss record is better than Switzer's, despite his lesser inheritance.

76
by FireOmarTomlin :: Fri, 10/15/2010 - 10:43pm

8-8 in a year when Big Ben preseason face planted into a windshield then had appendicitis.

They started 2-6 and then finished 6-2, basically playing decent ball once he was resembling healthy and back in form and rhythm.

Yaguar would leave out that little detail.

Given that BigBen didn't face plant after the 2nd SB, what is Tomlin's excuse for missing the playoffs after winning the SB (disgraceful!!!!) ?

---------
Men are more ready to repay an injury than a benefit because gratitude is a burden and revenge a pleasure.

76
by FireOmarTomlin :: Fri, 10/15/2010 - 10:43pm

8-8 in a year when Big Ben preseason face planted into a windshield then had appendicitis.

They started 2-6 and then finished 6-2, basically playing decent ball once he was resembling healthy and back in form and rhythm.

Yaguar would leave out that little detail.

Given that BigBen didn't face plant after the 2nd SB, what is Tomlin's excuse for missing the playoffs after winning the SB (disgraceful!!!!) ?

---------
Men are more ready to repay an injury than a benefit because gratitude is a burden and revenge a pleasure.

79
by Jerry :: Sat, 10/16/2010 - 5:17am

So can we assume that you weren't one of the people calling for Cowher to be fired because "he couldn't win the big game" before 2005?

80
by chemical burn :: Sat, 10/16/2010 - 11:29am

I have a funny feeling if Tomlin went 15-1 and didn't win the SB (or even make it to the SB) that FireOmar would be constantly citing that failure. I wonder what happens when Tomlin posts 6-10 and 7-9 seasons back-to-back after making the playoffs for several years in a row. Or when Tomlin leads his team to the SB gets blown out and embarassed in the big game.

81
by Yaguar :: Sat, 10/16/2010 - 12:20pm

Troy Polamalu out 11 games, a 9-7 record, and an unforgiving wildcard race?

64
by The Ninjalectual :: Fri, 10/15/2010 - 8:43am

I actually think that your visceral hatred of a coach who is 37-19 with a superbowl victory is more bizarre than raiderjoe's perpetual faith in his team.

Furthermore, RaiderJoe is knowledgeable and hilarious. OmarTomlin is neither.

25
by MilkmanDanimal :: Wed, 10/13/2010 - 5:31pm

Heyooooooooooooooooooo!!!!

15
by jackgibbs :: Wed, 10/13/2010 - 2:45pm

ATTN: Patriots. a 3-4 outside linebacker who specializes in rushing the passer? yes? please?

injury prone though he is, and even though I'm supposesed to hate every player from the 2006 chargers, I would jump on this, so fast.

19
by Andrew Potter :: Wed, 10/13/2010 - 3:04pm

Even if he's all-but-done, he's GOT to be an upgrade at the position surely?

31
by RichC (not verified) :: Wed, 10/13/2010 - 6:38pm

In his prime, sure. Now? Who knows.

That being said, the Pats give their LBs very different responsibilities than the chargers.

37
by some guy (not verified) :: Wed, 10/13/2010 - 8:52pm

Yup, and with all the focus the're putting on youth right now, I'd say no dice. Cowboys would love to have him I'm sure. Not that he's an upgrade but same scheme, same Wade. Jerry's probably got the contract already written up.

54
by The Ninjalectual :: Thu, 10/14/2010 - 7:34pm

the Pats give their LBs very different responsibilities than the chargers.

That's because they have LBs with very different skills. I'm sure they would love to have someone who could rush the passer, and then assign him to go do that.

58
by JonFrum (not verified) :: Fri, 10/15/2010 - 12:50am

No. They don't do that. The Patriots' OLBs have to seal the edge on run plays, and they have to be able to cover - they are not free to go to the QB, like on other teams. There are OLBs who are better than what the Patriots have now, but wouldn't fit their system. You don't change your system for one guy. At least not after you've won three Super Bowls.

65
by The Ninjalectual :: Fri, 10/15/2010 - 8:57am

Actually, yes they do. The Pats defensive system is not set in stone. A good coach will develop a scheme based around the talent he has on the roster. A bad coach who insists on implementing "his system" regardless of the talent on the roster, like say, Eric Mangini, won't change his system. But a smart coach like Belichick likely would.

If the Pats feel Merriman can be an effective pass rusher, they will find somebody else to set the edges and cover.

66
by RichC (not verified) :: Fri, 10/15/2010 - 11:00am

"If the Pats feel Merriman can be an effective pass rusher, they will find somebody else to set the edges and cover."

Merriman would most likely only play on 3rd downs for the Pats.

BB likes to bring pressure from all 4 LB spots, and having one guy who can't do anything but run forward creates predictable holes to take advantage of.

One-Trick players are useful, but they have downsides, no matter how good they are at that one trick.

67
by perly :: Fri, 10/15/2010 - 12:20pm

The obvious problem with this hypothetical being that post-injury Merriman can't rush the passer. He's become a 0-dimensional player.

18
by Drakos (not verified) :: Wed, 10/13/2010 - 2:54pm

So Merriman is gone, Tucker is lost for the season due to injury and English is out for a while. So much for depth at the outside linebacker position. I'm sure the Antwan Barnes signing will fix everything.

43
by Neoplatonist Bolthead (not verified) :: Thu, 10/14/2010 - 8:50am

It's the other Antwan who will take the starting role: Antwan Applewhite. There are three undrafted SDSU products on the Chargers right now, and they're all looking pretty good: Applewhite, backup DL Ogemdi Nwagbuo and now-backup OL Brandyn Dombrowski.

23
by Joe T. :: Wed, 10/13/2010 - 5:27pm

Dan Snyder is right now neatly stacking the dollar bills he was bathing in, giddily anticipating Merriman's release.

26
by TBW (not verified) :: Wed, 10/13/2010 - 5:56pm

That's ludicrous. Snyder is no doubt pissed off that the Skins didn't trade a pick to the Chargers in order to get their hand on Merriman. Now they risk losing him to another team, Snyder knows the smart play was to trade a pick for Merriman and then lock him up with a long-term deal with lots of guaranteed money.

34
by Xeynon (not verified) :: Wed, 10/13/2010 - 7:55pm

'A' pick? C'mon, multiple picks, including a future first rounder.

You need to make sure nobody outbids you.

69
by Anonymouse (not verified) :: Fri, 10/15/2010 - 3:06pm

Would be very suprised if Shanahan did not make a play for both Merriman and Jackson in the offseason. Very similar to what he did in signing Larry Johnson this past offseason.

82
by Mr Shush :: Sat, 10/16/2010 - 4:28pm

Merriman would be similar. Jackson, not so much. Jackson is removed from near-All Pro level play only by a holdout. There's no reason to think he couldn't be a star for years.

28
by The Hypno-Toad :: Wed, 10/13/2010 - 6:07pm

Hmmm, I has a conflicted on this. On the one hand, my favorite team is currently trotting out the alleged "Jarvis Moss" to start as their ROLB this week, so clearly we would be in the market for someone like Merriman. But on the other hand, taking on a player like Merriman to help with an injury crisis seems counter-intuitive.

33
by tornadot :: Wed, 10/13/2010 - 7:42pm

Another injury prone player? No.

47
by ChicagoRaider :: Thu, 10/14/2010 - 11:01am

Al might sign him just because. Probably not wise, but maybe the new Bill Romanowski. An outside linebacker signing the drives a division opponent nuts for years.