Dolphins' Xavien Howard is now the highest paid CB in NFL history
The Miami Dolphins just made Xavien Howard the highest paid cornerback in NFL history with a reworked 5 year contract worth more than $50 million.
The Dolphins were almost at ends with their cornerback, now it he's set to become the highest paid in his position in league history.
Xavien Howard becomes highest paid CB in NFL history
Its hard to believe that just last summer the Dolphins cornerback requested a trade after seemingly coming to an impasse in contract negotiations. Fast forward to Friday and reports suggest that not only have Miami and Howard patched things up, but they have completely reworked his deal such that he will now be the highest paid cornerback in the history of the NFL. That's right, with a restructured five-year contract which includes $51,691,177 in new money, Howard and his agent put pen to paper on the historic deal.
Is Xavien Howard worth it?
A two-time Pro Bowler, Howard was actually the 36th overall pick back in the 2016 NFL Draft and has led the NFL in interceptions twice including his career high of 10 picks during the 2020 season. In addition to those impressive numbers, he also led the NFL with 20 passes defended in that same season, as he helped the Dolphins to their best effort since his rookie year. With three years and $39.3 million left on his previous contract, the new deal is actually a logical progression in Howard's situation. Having been selected to the Pro Bowl again last season after registering five interceptions, 16 passes defended, two forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries and two defensive touchdowns, it would have been silly to let him go when its clear how much he has to offer.
The Dolphins are putting money where their mouth is
Though Howard's new deal will undoubtedly turn heads, its not the first time in recent months that Miami have grabbed attention as a result of spending big on talent. Six-time Pro Bowl receiver Tyreek Hill was acquired in a recent trade with the Chiefs on a four-year contract worth $120 million thereby making him the highest paid wide receiver in NFL history. There was also the signings of former free agents Raheem Mostert, Terron Armstead, Chase Edmonds, Cedrick Wilson Jr. and Teddy Bridgewater rounding out an extremely active offseason for the Dolphins. Last but not least, Miami also franchise tagged tight end Mike Gesicki while simultaneously re-signing defensive end Emmanuel Ogbah.
Mike McDaniel and Miami are building for the future
The 2022 season will mark the first that coach Mike McDaniel is in charge. Having spent last season as the 49ers' offensive coordinator, McDaniel comes to Miami fresh off of a Super Bowl appearance with San Francisco and most definitely high aspirations. In addition to the superbly talented Hill he will also have at his disposal the second-year receiver Jaylen Waddle who is definitely one to watch. Picked sixth overall in the 2021 NFL Draft, Waddle was as consistent as he was reliable when targeted by QB Tua Tagovailoa. Indeed, he caught 104 of 140 targets for a total of 1,015 yards and six touchdowns and was most certainly a critical part of the turn around that saw Miami finish 9-8 having started out 1-7.
"He's a phenomenal talent, and guess what, the best and easiest way to get yards is give it to a really talented player," McDaniel said recently. "The 49ers, the last four or five years, have led the league in YAC. The reason is because we were addicted to getting our skill position players that are good with running the ball the ball. So yes, I would start him in fantasy. Beyond that, I think you should see some jumps in the Miami Dolphins' offense next year. What those look like will be determined this off-season and the way the players work and attack things moving forward."
Needless to say, things are moving forward. The Dolphins now boast an improved offense and can feel confident that with signings like Howard's, they are building on a defense that already saw a strong finish to the last campaign. Dollars and cents aside, this is a team that is making its intent clear as it looks to take the league by storm next season.