MANDEVILLE, La. – Deuce McAllister is done trying to be a superstar, done trying to carry a team on his back as he did with the New Orleans Saints earlier this decade.
The 30-year-old power runner doesn’t want to be the embittered player living in denial about the effects of age and injuries on his game. He does, however, still want to win a Super Bowl – as a player.
“Keep living,” McAllister said. “Either injuries are going to take you out or age will catch you, and you have to kind of redefine your role if you want to continue to play.
“I’m content,” McAllister added. “I’ve been the guy before, so I’m beyond that. The ultimate goal is to win a championship and to be able to help a team out.”
Drafted by the Saints out of Ole Miss in 2001, McAllister is the franchise’s career rushing leader with 6,096 yards. His 55 total touchdowns and 49 rushing TDs also are Saints records.
Released by New Orleans after last season, McAllister has spent part of the offseason visiting with doctors at Duke University and the rest in Gulf Breeze, Fla., working out about five hours a day at a sports medicine institute run by orthopedic surgeon Dr. James Andrews.
McAllister’s goal was to figure out why his knees have taken such a beating in recent seasons. He’s torn anterior cruciate ligaments in both legs, first his right one in 2005 and then the left in 2007. He’s needed minor cleanup operations since.
He hopes within a few weeks to be ready to start visiting teams interested in signing him. He also wouldn’t rule out returning to New Orleans, which he said would be “a dream come true. … But if it’s on a visiting team, then so be it. All that will play itself out.”
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