Shawne Merriman. (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)
We had a discussion about Moss and the Giants on Monday. Pretty obvious almost no one wants to see Moss in a Giants uniform, not that it has any chance of happening, anyway. We might as well have the same conversation about Merriman, a three-time Pro Bowl linebacker with the San Diego Chargers who is still just 26 years old.
I had an e-mail from a reader last night opining that Merriman might not be a bad fit for the Giants. Derrik, screen name unknown (that just sounds kinda cool, like introducing an old-time wrestler from 'parts unknown') writes:
"I was thinking about Merriman today, and I was wondering how he'd look in a Giants uniform. When he was initially released I said no, but now with Kiwi on IR, I'm not so sure. I think he'd be the perfect low risk, high reward player for the GMen. Playing in a similar role as kiwi, passing downs on both the DL and a LB spot, he'd fit right in."
I disagree. I understand the 'we have a spot because Kiwi is down' thinking, but Merriman not the fearsome player he once was.
Known as "Lights Out" because of his once-ferocious hits, Merriman had 39½ sacks in his first three seasons. He's had only four in the three seasons since then due to a variety of injuries.
He was suspended for four games in 2006 after testing positive for steroids. Even missing the four games, he had 17 sacks that year. Merriman blamed the positive test on a tainted supplement, which he never identified.
He also brought unwanted attention off the field. He was arrested just before the 2009 season after reality television star Tila Tequila accused him of battery and false imprisonment at his suburban San Diego home. No charges were filed, and Merriman and Tequila settled dueling lawsuits.
Merriman missed most of the 2008 season after undergoing reconstructive knee surgery. He had four sacks last year as he tried to regain his hard-hitting form. After sitting out most offseason workouts and part of training camp to protest his contract status, he was slowed by an Achilles injury and then a calf injury.
He had only five tackles and no sacks in limited action this year.
Merriman was given a "minor injury designation" last month when the Chargers placed him on IR, meaning he had to be released once he was healthy enough to play.
ESPN offers a long list of teams that could be interested n Merriman. The Giants are not on the list.
Here is a scouting report on Merriman from Scouts Inc.
"I'm not a big Shawne Merriman fan," Matt Williamson said. "I don't think he is nearly as good of a player as he thinks he still is. Injuries have really taken a toll since 2008. He wasn't helping" San Diego.
Between the injuries, the baggage, the fact that Merriman does not really seem like a fit for the Giants 4-3 and that there really does not seem to be a need for an outside linebacker right now I could not see the Giants making a move like this.