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Surprise, surprise (not), Chargers release Tomlinson

The news does not come as a shock, because there have been hints for weeks. But the Chargers have now officially parted ways with running back LaDainian Tomlinson.

Chargers President Dean Spanos met with Tomlinson today and told the 30-year-old running back of the decision.

"This is a part of the business that I hate, and it’s particularly hard when you’re dealing with someone I consider a friend,” Spanos said. “Change involving great players is never easy. I respect LT as much or more than any player I’ve ever known. And no one appreciates his contributions to this organization more than I do. That is why this is such a difficult announcement for me to make.

"It has been a privilege to work with him and witness his entire career. I’m proud of him and grateful to him for the way he has carried himself both on and off the field. No matter where he chooses to continue his career, in my mind LT will always be a San Diego Charger. His legacy as one of the greatest running backs the game has ever seen will be as a Charger.”

Tomlinson owns or shares 28 team records, including career rushing yards, yards from scrimmage and touchdowns. During his nine seasons in San Diego, Tomlinson won two rushing titles (2006 and ’07), set an NFL single-season record for touchdowns in a season (31 in ’06) and racked up 12,490 rushing yards, the eighth-highest total in NFL history. He was the NFL’s Most Valuable Player in 2006 and earned Pro Bowl honors five times.

“I was fortunate to be the offensive coordinator here during LT’s rookie year in 2001 and it didn’t take long to realize that we were dealing with a special player and a special individual,” Chargers Head Coach Norv Turner said. “And when I returned to the Chargers in 2007, I was proud to be a part of his second NFL rushing title. LT is a true pro. He’s one of the greatest runners this game has ever seen and words can’t do justice to the things he’s accomplished on and off the field."

So, where does L.T. end up next?

Maybe nowhere.

After all, who's going to want to pay top dollar for an aging running back who is clearly past his time? Great career. Great guy. But this could be the end of the line.

New York Sports