Miami Dolphins sign Xavien Howard to record extensionby Ryan Potts May 9, 2019 0 comments
The Dolphins have locked down stud cornerback Xavien Howard to a five-year, $76.5 million dollar, according to multiple reports. Of the $76.5 million, $46 million is guaranteed for the 2018 Pro Bowler.
In 2018, Howard recorded seven interceptions, tying for the NFL lead with Damontae Kazee and Kyle Fuller. Howard had a break out 2018 campaign, earning a second-team All-Pro distinction from the Associated Press. Howard, the stalwart of the Dolphins defense, will look to stabilize himself as an elite cornerback for the next era of Dolphins football. Howard is now the highest paid cornerback in the NFL, with an average annual value of more than $15 million a season.
While the Dolphins offense is in flux with the recent acquisition of Josh Rosen, the Dolphins looked to secure their defense for the Rosen era by extending the contract for Howard. With Howard and elite safety Reshad Jones, the Dolphins have the making of a strong defense which could challenge for a wildcard birth in the coming seasons. While the Dolphins need help on the front seven, having a good secondary will certainly help the defense reach its true potential over the next couple seasons. A significant youth movement has transpired in Miami with the replacement of Cameron Wake with Christian Wilkins in the draft, and Miami’s commitment to Howard is just another step in beginning a new era of successful Dolphins football.
The former Baylor Bear and second-round pick has started 34 games for the Dolphins during his three seasons in the NFL. Despite only playing 12 games in 2018, Howard had his most dominant season both statistically and via the eye test as he was one of the best cornerbacks in football, being compared to the likes of Kyle Fuller and Desmond King in the season.
In essence, the Dolphins made a strategic move to lock down their future stars and to make a successful push as Tom Brady potentially nears his retirement. For the Dolphins, they should be reaching their highest potential by the time Brady retires, potentially sidestepping the Jets and Bills to reach the pinnacle of the AFC East.