Xavien Howard is a cornerstone piece for the Miami Dolphins but if he can’t stay on the field, what good is knowing he is the Dolphins top guy?
Since 2016, the Miami Dolphins have been very pleased with what they have seen from Xavien Howard. In 2018, he made his first Pro Bowl but he has also dealt with injuries during these four seasons as well and the Dolphins need him to stay healthy.
Some players on a roster you can get by without when they get a little banged up but when your secondary is relying on a top talent, not just team talent but league-wide talent, you want him to be on the field making an impact.
In 2016, Howard played in only seven games but played all 16 as a starter in 2017. In 2018, his Pro Bowl season, he played and started in 12 games but had seven interceptions. The Dolphins felt it was important to give Howard an extension heading into 2019. At the time he was one of the top paid corners in the NFL and was the top paid corner in the Dolphins team history. Then he was sidelined with a knee injury.
Howard missed all but five games in 2019 but even in those contests, he wasn’t 100%. He needs to get to 100% an stay that way.
Howard now has help on the opposite side with Byron Jones. Miami’s big free-agent signing this past off-season. Since his season ended early in 2019, Howard has had plenty of time to recover and with no actual workouts being conducted this off-season, Howard has even more time to get ready for the start of a season we don’t know will happen without uncertainty.
This is the time Miami needs Howard to be the 2018 ball-hawking corner that we know he can be. Last year was injury-riddled, it happens. Now with a bonafide corner to play with him, Howard could have the best season of his still-young career. The Dolphins need him to have that. If he does, he could cement himself as one of the best in Dolphin’s team history. He has to stay healthy to do that, however.