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Missing Persons Unit: The Disappearance of Shaun Alexander

Ryan CookFeatured ColumnistDecember 30, 2009

Any avid or casual NFL fan would remember him. Number 37, the so-called future of the Seattle Seahawks running game, Shaun Alexander.

Somewhere along the line things didn't work out, and like Marvin Harrison, he was dropped like a school-case and left on the curb to fight for himself in a league that simply didn't want to know about him.

Signing with the Seattle Seahawks in the 2000 NFL Draft as a first round pick, Alexander showed signs of promise from the early stages of his career.

He earned the starting job in his second year with the Seahawks, rushing for 1318 yards and 14 touchdowns, second in the NFL behind St. Louis' Marshall Faulk.

Alexander looked like a lifetime Seattle Seahawk, playing a long side teammates like Matt Hasselbeck and coached by one of the best to ever put on a set of headphones, Mike Holmgren.

Now, Alexander is fighting to sign with even the weakest teams in the NFL.

Why is that?

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A former 3 time Pro Bowler, AP NFL Offensive Player of the Year (2005), AP NFL MVP (2005) and former record holder for the most touchdowns in a single season, still can't get a third string role on a team.

Already having tried out for spots on rosters such as the Cincinnati Bengals, New Orleans Saints and Detroit Lions, Alexander was quickly turned away like an unwanted dog.

Stats aside, there are many teams in the NFL that could use a running back like Shaun Alexander. 

One of those teams, ironically, is the Seattle Seahawks.

Ever since Alexander's release, the Seahawks have struggled offensively in many ways. Their running game isn't what it used to be, and re-signing the old favorite could really boost their confidence. 

Of course, maybe Alexander feels otherwise.

Aside from Seattle, there are several other teams that could use his services. St. Louis could use a backup running back when Steven Jackson finally retires.

Or how about Kansas City

Jamaal Charles could surely use some help every now and again. 

However many teams I name, it still won't change the fact that Shaun Alexander is still a free agent. Arguably better than some running backs currently in the league, he deserves a chance to play again.

I wonder if we'll ever get the chance to see him lace up his cleats and hit the turf again. 

Right now we don't know. We may never know. 

But if he doesn't, it will be a sad day.

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