Nearly a week after the Chicago Bears cut him loose, John Capel is still looking for a place to start his NFL career anew.
Robert Alterman, Capel's agent, said he has talked with about 20 teams about Capel, a seventh-round pick whose rights were relinquished by the Bears last week.
Interest has been lukewarm, Alterman said.
"Most of the teams have their preseason rosters set," said Alterman, who said Washington and Atlanta have expressed the most interest.
"They're going to go into camp with what they have, but if they're unhappy with what they find, they have John back on their boards now."
Capel, the former Hernando High standout who represented the United States as a sprinter in last year's Olympics, can sign with any team.
But, Alterman said, he likely will not receive a signing bonus.
His next contract likely would include a roster bonus, to be paid if he sticks with the team, Alterman said.
That won't be with the Bears, however, who took the rare action of severing relations with a draft pick before even signing a contract.
General manager Jerry Angelo, who came to Chicago from the Buccaneers last month, said Capel's commitment to the sport was a problem.
"You hate to give up on a draft pick, especially before camp," Angelo told the Chicago Tribune. "But the fact is John did not display the desire needed to be a member of this football team.
"His actions left us with little choice but to severe the relationship and move forward."
Youth runners meeting
Murray's Milers, a new youth running program created by Brooksville's Red Mule Runners Club, will hold a monthly meeting and group run at 8:30 a.m. Saturday at the Withlacoochee Trail, located at State Road 50 and Interstate 75.
Runners entering third through sixth grades next year are welcome to join the free program. The program, named for the Red Mule mascot, Murray the Mule, will invite children to keep a log of their running, both with the group and on their own.
When runners reach a milestone, such as 26.2 miles (the length of a marathon), 50 miles and 100 miles, they will receive a certificate and T-shirt.
Last month's meeting had 10 runners sign up, and the program's director, Chuck Boldt, said he is expecting the interest to continue with each month's run.
For information, call Boldt at (352) 688-6484.
_ GREG AUMAN