Redskins report

THE BALTIMORE SUN

What's new: The Michael Westbrook soap opera is heating up again as he prepares to come back from his latest knee injury. The team's most talented wide receiver and No. 1 draft pick out of Colorado in 1995 has taken some heat around Washington lately for what some consider a lack of toughness by not playing with pain. He missed five games with knee and ankle injuries in his rookie year and has already been out of action three games this season with two torn posterior cruciate ligaments in his left knee. Westbrook returned to practice Monday for the first time since suffering the second PCL tear against the New York Giants and was talking yesterday about possibly playing Sunday against the New England Patriots. But he said he didn't want to rush back and risk a third injury to the knee. Coach Norv Turner admitted last month that the team brought Westbrook back too soon (second game of regular season against Chicago Bears) after the first PCL injury in the second preseason game.

Next game: The Redskins (4-1) take on Bill Parcells and the host Patriots (3-2) on Sunday and Parcells is being questioned at length again about how long he plans to coach the team and if he'll return next season. Yesterday, during a conference call to Redskin Park, Parcells said, "I coach year-to-year. I've been asked four times if I'll be back next year but I'm not talking about it." Parcells said last season (6-10, after 10-6 in 1994) was as disappointing a year as he has had in coaching. "I take responsibility for it. I wasn't demanding enough, insistent enough and just didn't do a good job," he said. "But the players also didn't play well." Parcells met with Patriots owner Robert Kraft last summer to talk about his contract and future with the team. He had retired from coaching for two seasons (1991-1992) after learning of a threatening heart condition.

What Norv Turner said: "I want to make sure he's [Westbrook] ready to go this time. Michael is doing a lot in practice and we'll make a decision Sunday morning on whether to go with Michael or Flipper [Anderson] as our fourth wide receiver. I'd say Michael's a long shot to play Sunday."

Injuries: Starting Washington defensive end Sterling Palmer will undergo arthroscopic surgery to repair cartilage damage in his left knee today and is now officially being listed as doubtful instead of probable for Sunday. Palmer first injured the knee Sept. 15 in a 31-10 victory over the New York Giants.

Quotable: "Dave Meggett [who had his No. 1 retired by Towson State last Saturday night) has lost a few pounds, which has helped him and he's back to his old self. I'd like to be getting the ball in his hands 10 to 15 times a game. He's comparable to Washington's [Brian] Mitchell. They both affect field position dramatically with kickoff and punt returns," said Parcells.

Pub Date: 10/10/96

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