Little talking going on in talks with RB Ervins PRO FOOTBALL


CARLISLE, Pa. -- Ricky Ervins still considers himself part of the Washington Redskins family, but he's starting to think it's time for a divorce.

"Sometimes families do split up," Ervins' agent, Ray Newman, said yesterday.

Newman said he is frustrated that Redskins general manger Charley Casserly hasn't called him with a counteroffer and suggested he may be close to asking for a trade.

"I guess we'll be forced into that. I don't think it benefits him or the Redskins for Ricky to sit out a year. Maybe Charley should call some other teams to see what he could get for Ricky. All he wants to do is play and play at a fair wage," he said.

Ervins, who made $180,000 last year in his second season, and the Redskins are so far apart that Casserly sees no need to continue the talks. With Brian Mitchell and rookie Reggie Brooks looking good in camp, the Redskins don't have a pressing need for another back.

"We'd like to have Ricky in camp, but I don't have anything to say to him," Casserly said. The Redskins are offering about $430,000 while Ervins wants about $1.3 million.

Newman argues he's asking for less than the $1.6 million average that free-agent running backs got last year. The Redskins counter that he's not a free agent.

The Redskins' highest-paid running back, Earnest Byner, makes $1 million.

Steelers' Foster a holdout

The Pittsburgh Steelers, who'll meet the Redskins in a scrimmage today, have two holdouts -- running back Barry Foster and second-round pick Chad Brown.

Running back Tim Worley, who sat out last year with a drug suspension, will see his first action against another team since 1991.

Conklin, Howard to sit

Quarterback Cary Conklin (knee) and Desmond Howard (groin), last year's top draft pick, are the only Redskins definitely out of the scrimmage.

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