Los Angeles Chargers  


Dielman unsure of return to Chargers following concussion

  • By Associated Press
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SAN DIEGO -- Chargers left guard Kris Dielman, who missed the final 10 games of the season with a concussion, said Monday that he's willing to risk his health in pursuit of winning a Super Bowl ring.

"Yeah, I think so," Dielman said Monday in his first comments since the concussion, which caused the NFL to investigate the injury and announce it would give game officials "concussion awareness training" so they could keep an eye out for players.

"I've got some other people who probably wouldn't agree," said Dielman, who added that ultimately it will be his decision whether he returns or retires.

Dielman, a four-time Pro Bowl lineman who's the father of two young boys, said the lure of winning a championship is strong.

"I would love a ring. That's what I've been playing for since I got in," said Dielman, who joined the Chargers as an undrafted rookie in 2003. "That was my goal, my first year, was to make the team, then to make the practice squad, then to get on the 53 (man roster). The Super Bowl ultimately was the end one. And that's what everybody's fighting for."

Dielman had been off-limits to reporters until the end of the season because he wasn't cleared to play, and he called the concussion process "pretty scary." He eventually was placed on season-ending injured reserve, a move he wanted because of the unknowns involved.

"Actually, I wanted to be put on. It was a mutual decision between both of us," Dielman said, referring to Chargers coach Norv Turner. "Me and Norv talked extensively about it, and we made the right decision."

Asked if he'd be more cognizant about a possible concussion and would pull himself out of a game, Dielman said: "Apparently, I won't do that. That's the scary part, too. I'll play through just about anything and I've played through this one and it got me. I've made my whole career doing dumb (stuff) like that."

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Dielman said he doesn't remember the hit that hurt him.

"It looks like I'm drunk," he said. "Deal with it. That's how I got here, doing stupid (stuff) on the football field. It got me 10 years in, so I'm all right with that."

Dielman said he'll speak with his family and doctors before deciding on his future.

"If I didn't have kids and a family, the decision would be much easier," he said. "I probably would have been playing again this year."

"It's not just me. I have two little boys and a wife," he added. "I have to make sure everything's all right with me and I have to see some doctors still and make a decision from there. Whenever I choose, I'm not going to do anything to hurt the organization. It's only a day after the season's over. I'm not making any decisions yet."

Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press



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