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Shawne Merriman: Injuries actually made me better

We know this might sound familiar, but Shawne Merriman again is pointing toward a big comeback season.

The Buffalo Bills linebacker has been slowed by injuries in recent seasons, but he'll report to training camp this week at "100 percent." He believes the time playing at less than full ability had a positive effect on his game.

"I'm a much smarter player and much more technical now," Merriman said, via the Bills' official website. "I know a lot more about the game. When you don't have those physical tools the last three years and being able to blow by a guy or great pass-rush ability, you start to learn more about the game and you get a little bit more technically sound.

"And that's what happened. Now my body is ready to take that on again along with the knowledge I've picked up over the last few years. It's going to be good."

It's a different take on the same theme, but we're going to hold off getting on the "Lights Out" bandwagon until Merriman can put together an extended stretch of productive play. That's still possible at age 28, but the memory of Merriman as a game-changing force is becoming foggy.

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