If anyone knows anything about making plays — it’s Xavien Howard.
The four-time Pro Bowl cornerback led the league with five interceptions in 2020, but he only had one interception this season. That said, Howard battled groin injuries throughout the year and also came up big when the team needed him.
Howard intercepted Josh Allen in Miami’s near upset over the Buffalo Bills in the Wild Card round, which pairs nicely with an interception of Ben Roethlisberger in the 2016 playoffs.
Miami’s top cornerback spent three years in Josh Boyer’s system and believes new defensive coordinator Vic Fangio will boost the entire defense.
“I feel like the defense is definitely going to elevate,” Howard said when speaking to NFL Network’s Cameron Wolfe. “I feel like every defense he had was in the top five, so I feel like he can do a lot of good things on defense and really put a lot of guys in a defensive position to make plays.”
“I feel like the defense definitely going to elevate, man. I feel like every defense he had it was in the top-5.”@MiamiDolphins top CB Xavien Howard talking with me for @nflnetwork earlier this month about his big expectations for #Dolphins defense now ran by DC Vic Fangio. pic.twitter.com/CMWaEaaWTn— Cameron Wolfe (@CameronWolfe) February 15, 2023
Miami was No. 27 in passing defense last year and ranked No. 18 in total defense. Coach Mike McDaniel searched for an experienced defensive coordinator and found the ideal candidate in Fangio, who has 36 years of experience as a coach and was named the AP NFL Assistant Coach of the Year in 2018 with the Chicago Bears.