SEATTLE Shaun Alexander isn't bitter at being unemployed.
He isn't angry at the Seahawks, who in April dumped their career rushing and touchdowns leader. He doesn't feel betrayed that Seattle cut him just two seasons after he was the NFL's MVP, led it to its only Super Bowl appearance and then signed a $62 million contract.
And, no, he isn't retiring.
Instead, Alexander, 31, believes he will sign with one of a handful of teams that have provided a "constant flow of calls," including his hometown Cincinnati Bengals. His extended family in northern Kentucky already is making plans.
"They want me to be Tres Siete," Alexander told The Associated Press by phone Friday, laughing at the twist on Bengals star receiver formerly known as Chad Johnson now being officially recognized as Chad Ocho Cinco, to match his uniform No. 85 in Cincinnati.
Alexander grew up in Florence, Ky., across the Ohio River from the Bengals' waterfront stadium.
He's been working out at the University of Washington's weight room and indoor track and football field with speed coach Joe Gentry.
Surprised students are bumping into him and his familiar, beaming smile and saying, 'Hey, aren't you ... Shaun Alexander?"
Two months ago, X-rays showed the cracked bone in his left foot that ruined his 2006 season and hampered him in '07 is finally fully meshed again. The broken left wrist he had to begin last season is fine, too.
"Man, I'm healthy and excited to play. And I think this year can be a big year for me if I get the opportunity. I can still play the game. I think I can help a team get to the Super Bowl," he said during a 40-minute talk in which he was as relentlessly upbeat as always, despite the fact he knew his friends on the Seahawks were leaving at the same hour for their season opener at Buffalo on Sunday.
He said he'd sign for the veteran minimum. "I've never played for money."
He said he's willing to share roles, that he doesn't need to carry the ball 30 times a game anymore. He just wants a Super Bowl title.
Seattle cut its career leader with 9,429 yards and 112 TDs days before the draft because it believes Maurice Morris, Julius Jones and T.J. Duckett will combine to be more dynamic and produce better this season than Alexander did in his last two years.
"I think that it won't be long before a team calls that says, 'Just go do what you do,"' he said.
Daunte Culpepper is a fellow 31-year-old former star who was unemployed before giving up waiting for that call. Culpepper retired Thursday.
Will Alexander retire, too, if a team doesn't offer him a job during the season?
"No," he said. "I haven't even thought about it like that. I've had enough conversations with teams to know this could be coming soon."