Tag Archives: San Diego Chargers

Merriman, Shawne ‘Lights Out’

Cards: Score 2009, Score 2010, SP 2011
Acquired: TTM 2018, C/o Work
Sent: 5/29 Received: 6/29     (31 days)

“Sometimes that flame burns bright. Sometimes it burns so fast and bright it inexplicably burns itself out.”

This makes me think of Shawne Merriman- a dominating force who wrecked havoc around the NFL for a short period of time.  Merriman was a first round selection (#12 overall) by the San Diego Chargers, who had gotten the pick as part of the Eli Manning trade, during the 2005 draft. Shawne was an interesting specimen. He clocked in at 6’4″, 272, with a 4.6 40, and an impressive 40 in vertical jump.  Shawne also had pretty solid stats while playing at Maryland, posting back to back 9 sack seasons, and 140 career tackles. The Chargers were going to use Shawne as a tweener both a linebacker and a defensive end.

Shawne did not get into the starting lineup until almost the mid point of his rookie year- but he made the best of it, blowing by defenders for 10 sacks, 43 tackles, 2 forced fumbles and 5 pass deflections. For his efforts, he earned Defensive Rookie of the Year Honors in 2005, and captured his first Pro Bowl Honor. He returned in 2006 on a rampage, racking up 17 sacks, 48 tackles, 4 forced fumbles, 8 pass deflections, and an interception. It goes without saying that Shawne was named to the Pro Bowl and earned All-Pro, playing all 3 positions in the Chargers linebacker front.  He did this only in 12 games, and was suspended for 4 contests due to a violation of the NFL’s drug policy. Merriman continued his banner play in 2007, earning a Pro Bowl Honor on the back of 12.5 sacks, a career high 54 tackles, 2 forced fumbles, and 4 pass deflections.

It all came apart in 2008. Shawne played the first game of the season on a pair of torn ligaments in his knee, ending his year. He came back for 2009, but nagging injuries kept him down to just 4 sacks and 26 tackles in 14 starts.  Things just kept breaking into 2010, with IR his final destination after 3 games and just 1 start. He’d be released by the Chargers after the season, but not before being named to the Chargers 50th Anniversary Team.

Shawne soon found himself on and off the roster of the Bills. Again persistent injuries played a huge part in the end of his season, and his career in 2013. He’d register 2 sacks, 19 tackles, and 1 pass deflection in 6 starts for the Bills- over two seasons.  He’d retire at the grand ‘old’ age of 28.

Shawne lives in the Los Angeles area. He’s gotten into different types of adrenaline sports- NASCAR, WWE, martial arts, and has made cameos on TV shows. He also has a foundation and a clothing line named after his moniker ‘Lights Out’.

G/GSTACSACFUMINTYDSAVGTDLG
75/5919645.5811010.0010

Pettis, Austin

Card: Topps Finest 2011 (696/1000)
Acquired: BB 2018, Walmart Autographed Memorabilia


One of the finest receivers to grace Boise State, Austin Pettis essentially owned the Broncos’ career receiving charts finishing with 229 receptions (1st), for 2,838 yards (2nd), and 39 touchdown receptions (1st). Well decorated, he earned Second Team All-WAC in 2008, and First Team All-WAC in 2009 and 2010.  Austin had a decent combine, and led receivers in the shuttle drill, parlaying his performance into a 3rd round pick of the then St. Louis Rams in 2011.

He finished his rookie season suspended for PEDs, but managed to haul in 27 receptions for 256 yards. Pettis also saw spot duty on special teams as a punt and kick returner. Austin caught his first professional TD the following season in 2012 against the Packers, and finished the year with 30 receptions for 261 yards and 4 touchdowns.  He built on his numbers again in 2013, with a career high 38 receptions for 399 yards and 4 TDs.  In 5 games during 2014, Austin logged 12 receptions for 118 yards and a TD, but was cut in October.

Austin signed with the then San Diego Chargers for 2015. While he did have a solid camp, he was among the final cuts to the 53 man roster. Austin has gone into coaching since football and as of 2018 is a personal trainer/ wide receiver coach for OCPremium in California.

This is a nice patch card from Topps. It showcases 3 important elements very well: the autograph, the player portrait, and the patch. The design, while a bit busy with the dots, is unified in theory by its association and lack of color.

G/GP 47        REC 107      YDS 1034      AVG 9.7       TD 9      LG 36
KR    4             YDS 75         AVG   18.8               TD 0          LG 24
PR  29            YDS 254       AVG   8.8                TD 0         LG 39

Bercovici, Mike

Card: Sage 2016  (173/250)
Acquired: 2016, Box Breaker


Mike Bercovici picked up for Brock Osweiler at QB for the Arizona State Sun Devils. The backup finally started seeing action in 8 games during 2014, throwing for 1,445 yards, with 12 touchdowns to just 4 interceptions. In his Senior year, Mike started 13 games en route to a banner year throwing for 3,854 yards (318 completions on 531 attempts), 30 touchdowns and 9 interceptions.  While Mike displayed a zip on the ball that surprised many scouts, they picked apart his decision making and deep ball accuracy. Still many scouts were intrigued by his arm strength and competitiveness.

Mike went unselected in the 2016 NFL Draft. He’d become a focus of the NFL Network show Undrafted during his free agent quest to find a team. While he’d latch on to the Chargers through camp, he’d be released during final cutdowns in both 2016 and 2017. Mike joined the Cardinals practice squad during 2017 but after a month on the squad he was released. Currently he is a free agent.

I liked these Sage issues from 2016 though the type of the gold versions of the cards would get lost in the grass texture. Mike has a pretty nice looking autograph too. The M has just the right amount of point to it, while the B has a strong loop to it.