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Merriman deciding whether to play or have surgery

Updated: August 24, 2008, 1:21 AM ET
Associated Press

SAN DIEGO -- Chargers Pro Bowl linebacker Shawne Merriman said Saturday he has two torn ligaments in his left knee and has been told by doctors that he could suffer a possible career-ending injury if he attempts to play without having surgery.

Merriman said he has tears in both the posterior cruciate and lateral collateral ligaments. He said doctors agree that he needs surgery to repair the damage.

"It could be career-threatening if I did [play]," Merriman said. "It's a possibility. ...

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