San Diego Chargers linebacker Shawne Merriman has decided to have surgery on the two torn ligaments in his left knee and will miss the rest of the season.
The loss of the Pro Bowl linebacker is a huge setback for a team that has Super Bowl expectations.
Merriman didn't immediately return e-mails and telephone calls seeking comment.
"Shawne informed me he did not feel right and thought it best to shut it down," Chargers general manager A.J. Smith said in a statement. "The road to winning the AFC West just got more difficult, but not impossible. Nothing is impossible. Shawne is a great player and an inspirational leader. He will be missed. We wish him a successful surgery and a speedy recovery."