SAN DIEGO (AP) - While his teammates practiced Monday morning, Shawne Merriman took a dip.
It was part of coach Norv Turner's plan to give the star outside linebacker an occasional morning practice off on days when the San Diego Chargers practice twice.
"Lights Out" had reported with the rookies a week earlier, so he was due to get a practice off
"Whatever they have planned for me, I'm cool with it," said Merriman, who was sidelined for all but the opener last year after having surgery on two torn ligaments in his left knee. "Even though I'm not practicing, I'm still doing things on the side. Like I had a vicious pool workout today on the side," Merriman said.
"It's hard. It's one of the best workouts you can do without taking a pounding. You're still getting all your movements and stuff like that. I still have my strengthening and more specific stuff. I'm cool with it. It's a bunch of cardio stuff, of course, but you get a chance to do some lateral movements, work on explosion. It takes a little bit off the pounding when you come down."
Merriman, who participated in the afternoon practice in pads, said his knee is fine.
"It's not the knee that's the question right now, it's getting back in the groove of things, getting the mechanics back right," he said. "Just the little things like that, getting your hips and your groin and everything. Your sense of play direction, you know, getting the feel of the plays, seeing it at that fast pace. It's a bunch of those things that you have to get back used to. Everything else is going to come."
Copyright 2009 The Associated Press.