Shawne Merriman has returned! Woo hoo and raise a toast. Merriman has finally agreed to a deal with the Chargers today, which he confirmed via Twitter, saying:
“Just signed my tender and glad to be back with my teammates thanks to everyone.”
But what did he gain? NBC Sports says he simply got a promise not to trade him and $3.269 million for this year. He also missed out on part of training camp, which could be a theme going forward thanks to the ever popular #4 (with the Falcons, Packers, Jets, and Vikings) Brett Favre. Still, unlike Favre, I doubt that was what Merriman was looking for. He might have just conceded that he won’t get the deal he wants this year, but will get an opportunity to play and become very attractive to another team in the 2011 season. If he’s looking at his football career as a whole, this would be a smart thing to do. So often these guys aren’t looking long-term though. I hope Merriman is.
Besides that, it’s the rare guy who can miss training camp and still play at the top of his game. Favre is an exception. I keep hearing guys whine about training camp here and there, but I still think it benefits even the veterans. Merriman needs to step it up to not only make up for the time he’s lost, but to ensure that he’s still a viable player for next year.