A conversation with Shawne Merriman

San Diego Chargers linebacker Shawne Merriman made a few plays that showed why he was selected in the first round of the 2005 NFL Draft on Sunday.

On how he feels:

I feel pretty good. I had a rough preseason and that was really my first access since I have been here. It felt good though.

On missing Dallas:

That is the only game that I missed and it is a game I really wish I could have played but it is done and over with and you have to move on and continue the process throughout the season.

On how he graded out:

I graded pretty good. I got a couple of different pressures on Eli and live in the backfield a little bit, which they want me to do.

I think we played well as a defense and the offense was tremendous and we came out with a win.

On learning curve:

There are a lot of things I still need to learn. Football is football, you get to the ball and make your play. As long as you do that your teammates can rely on you.

On dropping Tiki Barber behind the line:

I saw it coming. It doesn't hurt that the blitz was called and I came free and just so happened to get in the backfield fast enough for me to make a play, a tackle for a loss.

It was kind of a relief, a 300-pound monkey off my back. When I hit him I just felt lighter.

On getting pressure:

You get back there as fast as you can and then react. The first thing you want to do is get in the backfield and then you react to everything else that happens.


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