Shawne Merriman has announced he wont report to training camp with the rest of the team's veterans Friday, and suggested he may continue to sit out until he receives assurances from the Chargers that he wont be shopped for trade.
Speaking with Kevin Acee of the San Diego Union-Tribune, Merriman made it clear he is unhappy with his name constantly being associated with trade rumors and speculation.
“It’s not about me wanting more money,” he said. “I will show what I deserve. I don’t have to ask for it. I feel like I’ve proved what I’m worth, and I will still prove it. To me, it really comes down to, ‘Am I on the trading block this week? The third week of the season, am I on the block?’ Where is that comfortability for me?”
“I’m only coming back to be the guy on the defense. I’m not coming back to be a guy. I want to be on a team where someone is going to be building a defense around me.”
Merriman, making it known on multiple occasions that he is happy in San Diego and wishes to remain a Charger, is looking for a commitment from the team. He's not demanding more money and has accepted his restricted free agent tender. What Merriman wants, however, is some assurance that he's going to be a Charger for the entire season and is willing to let his performance set the price for his upcoming free agency.
“I’m waiting for the green light to have a great year,” he said. “I need to know I’m not going to be on the trade block every three weeks. … The question is do I have stability enough to go play football and not worry about the other things. This is literally day to day how things progress, how things move. I don’t want this to be a distraction to my teammates. I don’t want this to be a distraction to me. I just want to get something resolved soon and go from there. The bottom line is when I get back on the field I plan on doing what I do best, and that is playing. I just hope to get rid of the unnecessary talk. One thing needs to happen — we need to get over the hump. And me not being there is not going to help us get over the hump.”
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