Friday, July 6, 2007

Countdown to Kickoff: 56 Days

As we continue on our daily countdown towards the 2007 season, we are now at 56, and we have a double-shot for today. Representing 56 will be USC's sophomore defensive tackle Alex Parsons, who wears jersey #56 for Pete Carroll's squad, and also we will honor #56 for the San Diego Chargers, linebacker Shawne Merriman...

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Alex Parsons had a nice performance in the spring game, but now he must carry that momentum into the fall. The 6'4" 285 lbs. sophomore will be given the opportunity to be one of the top backups at defensive tackle following the ineligibility of Chris Barrett. With Sedrick Ellis being a senior, Parsons needs to provide quality minutes this season and gain some valuable experience for 2008.

Shawne "lights out" Merriman is probably the most feared pass rusher in the game, and in my opinion is the 2nd best linebacker in the NFL, next to Baltimore's Ray Lewis. He was chosen 12th overall in the 2005 NFL Draft for a reason. He's extremely versatile despite his massive size, as he demonstrated during his draft workouts. Merriman ran the 40-yard dash in 4.64 seconds and had a vertical jump of 40 inches (Dwayne Jarrett would kill for those numbers) which is even more impressive when you consider that he weighed in at 272 lbs. He showcased his big-hitting nature at the University of Maryland, and continued his physical play in the pros.

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