Jaguars rookie WR Dede Westbrook has a close connection to Buccaneers WR DeSean Jackson

Jaguars rookie wide receiver Dede Westbrook is speedy, but small. 

There's been some concern about his ability to get off press coverage in the NFL. At just 178 pounds, Westbrook is light for an NFL wide receiver.

While a lack of size can be a deterrence for some wide receivers, Westbrook can find solace in knowing that others have made Pro Bowls and posted 1,000-yard seasons without being built like prototypical players at the position.

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This week will offer Westbrook a glimpse into his potential.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers will come to town for joint practices on Monday and Tuesday and a preseason game on Thursday. Westbrook will get to see a player who fits his mold and has still had success at the highest level. 

Buccaneers wide receiver DeSean Jackson stands 5-foot-10 and only weighs 175 pounds. Still, he has produced 8,819 receiving yards and 53 total touchdowns in nine seasons of action.

Westbrook can be a similar big play threat to Jackson. The rookie said Jackson is a wide receiver he has paid attention to over the years. They even have a personal relationship.

"Most definitely," Westbrook said, when asked about looking up to Jackson. "Me and DeSean Jackson are also really good friends. We text each other, every now and again. So I get to see him and see the things that he [does] at practice and try to imitate that as well."

Westbrook's college career speaks for itself.

In only two years Oklahoma, Westbrook produced 120 catches for 2,208 receiving yards and 20 touchdowns. He won the Blietnikoff Award as the nation's best wide receiver and was a finalist for the Heisman Trophy.

Those accolades pushed the Jaguars to select him in the fourth round of the this year's NFL Draft, despite his history of character issues.

If Westbrook can take advantage of his speed and avoid the hurdles that come with a limited physique like Jackson has, the rookie may grow into a major deep threat in the NFL.

Follow Mike Kaye on Twitter at @Mike_E_Kaye.

© 2017 WTLV-TV


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