Redskins ponder receivers

Less than two weeks ago, receiver Michael Westbrook figured he'd remain in Washington. He obviously wanted to play for a pass-happy coach and he thought the Redskins would pay him to stick around. Now, say those who have talked to him, he's very pessimistic about staying in town.

The problem: Westbrook apparently wants a contract worth around $5 million a season. He won't get that in Washington.

The Redskins have talked to his agent, but there's no doubt Westbrook will test the market. And, while he'd love to reunite with Cleveland receivers coach Terry Robiskie, the most important thing is the contract.

All along Westbrook has said that he'd like a multi-year deal, one that will set him up financially for the rest of his life. Say what you will about Westbrook, but he's not a knucklehead with his money like former Redskin Albert Connell, who routinely borrowed money from teammates, according to players.

Westbrook's preference is to stay in Washington. But unless the Redskins ante up, he'll depart. Of course, he might find the market is soft for him, at least for his demands, and the Redskins could have him cheaper.

Meantime, we hear that coach Steve Spurrier likes Kevin Lockett, the Redskins' third wideout this past season who caught 22 passes.

Spurrier was glad that Houston did not select Lockett in the Expansion Draft. Lockett fits the mold of Spurrier's receivers at Florida: he's a smaller, quicker guy who runs solid routes and has good hands. Unless Spurrier is just conning others, look for Lockett to have a bigger role this season.

John Keim has covered the Redskins for eight seasons and is a correspondent for Pro Football Weekly.


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