Dolphins Rumors: Xavien Howard Agrees to Restructured Contract with Miami

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured ColumnistAugust 8, 2021

Miami Dolphins cornerback Xavien Howard (25) runs the football during the first half of an NFL football game against the New England Patriots, Sunday, Dec. 20, 2020, in Miami Gardens, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)
Chris O'Meara/Associated Press

The standoff between the Miami Dolphins and Xavien Howard is over.  

The two parties reportedly agreed to a restructured contract on Sunday, according to Mike Garafolo of NFL Network. Ian Rapoport of NFL Network and Armando Salguero of the Miami Herald broke down the details in the new contract:

Ian Rapoport @RapSheet

What did Xavien Howard get? $1M Pro Bowl incentive. $3.5M in additional incentives. Rescinding all minicamp fines. The max for 2021 is $16,285,294 https://t.co/ZOjYPeHfJj

Ian Rapoport @RapSheet

For 2022, Xavien Howard gets $500K in per-game roster bonuses and $100K in workout bonuses move to base salary and guaranteed. The full amount for 2022 of $12.975M is injury guaranteed with conversion to fully guaranteed the first day of league year. https://t.co/ZOjYPeHfJj

Ian Rapoport @RapSheet

More for Xavien Howard: Now, $6.775 million of his 2022 salary is fully guaranteed at signing. Plus, he got assurances they will renegotiate a new deal in late February/ early March in line with market based on health and 2021 performance. https://t.co/Luz54lyGdK

Armando Salguero @ArmandoSalguero

Added following Incentives for 2021 1- $1m pro bowl or all pro 2- 70% plus team 3 worst categories = $750,000 Plus 3- 80% playtime =$750,000 Plus 4- 90% playtime 1m Maximum earn on incentives $3.5mil 5- Got them to rescind $93,000 In fines from missed Mini camp

Albert Breer @AlbertBreer

Dolphins and CB Xavien Howard’s amended contract includes … • $1M All-Pro/Pro Bowl incentive for ‘21. • $2.5M in play-time incentives in ‘21. • $600K in workout/per-game roster bonuses for ‘22 converted to base salary. • $6.775M of ‘22 money fully guaranteed.

Howard came into the offseason just one year through a five-year, $75.2 million contract with the Dolphins, though his $12.1 million cash for the 2021 season made him the 12th-highest-paid corner in football, placing behind teammate Byron Jones. 

Garafolo noted he is likely the first NFL player to receive added money on a deal with four years remaining on his contract.

In June, Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald reported that the 28-year-old was "displeased not only because he wants more money but because he believes he should be the team's highest-paid cornerback, according to a source close to the situation."

Howard was also open to being traded during the 2020 season, per the report, though a deal never materialized.

And in July, Howard campaigned for a trade:

Armando Salguero @ArmandoSalguero

Brian Flores on Xavien Howard adjusted contract: "Any negotiation, compromise is important...We want both sides to be happy and that's the case right now."

So it doesn't come as a major surprise that he was on the trade block.

The Baylor product was fantastic last year, leading the NFL in interceptions (10) and passes defended (20). It wasn't a major surprise that he wanted a contract restructure. 

It was unclear if the Dolphins would grant him one or let him go in a trade. They took the former route, unwilling to let go of such a key performer with postseason aspirations going forward.