It’s way early in training camp. I realize that. Actual football, real American football starts tonight with the hall of fame game. But yeah, we’re still extremely early in the process of figuring out what the 2018 Dolphins will be about. But that doesn’t mean I and the rest of the Dolphins faithful can’t get all giddy about what CB Xavien Howard is doing at camp. Today, Xavien abused Miami’s offense.
Xavien Howard intercepts Ryan Tannehill for the THIRD time today.
— Adam Beasley (@AdamHBeasley) August 2, 2018
Picking off Tannehill 3 times today, one of which he bodied up Parker on a jump ball. Not sure about you, but Ryan is probably very glad that he doesn’t have to see Howard wearing another jersey on Sunday. Also, if I’m Tannehill, I’m curious to know if Howard is living inside my head, knowing what I’m about to do before I even do it because it appears that’s happening right now.
Psychoanalysis aside, Howard is having a very strong camp. Not just today, but right from the get go. Sure, you could say that these INTs were during drill, where he knew Ryan was throwing the ball. You could also say that Howard may of even knew what routes the receivers were running. You could even say that this is training camp and that nothing matters until week 1. Go ahead and say all that if you don’t like fun. Xavien Howard is a shaping up to be a very good, dare I say elite player in this league and I won’t have anyone telling me to curb my enthusiasm on Howard. I won’t stand for it.
I understand that it’s best not to over react to everything you read and see on Twitter. You can’t go 12 seconds without someone posting a clip from any team’s training camp of a guy making a one-handed catch, a nice deep ball or even an INT and then make the predictable proclamation that that guy is going to be a stud. You can set your watch to it every 12 seconds. But we’ve known about Howard for a little bit and frankly, it be really nice to have a dominant CB. How cool would it be to have one of those CBs that get regarded as one of those guys who take away half the field like Revis, Bailey, Sanders and others did, to be considered a “shutdown” CB? The answer is it would be very cool if this happened. We’ve seen what Howard can do when he’s fully healthy against the best of the best. We all watched Howard abuse Tom Brady and Patriot receivers last year on Monday night. We saw what he did throughout the 2nd half of last year. I think we all have that thought that it’s possibly he could be one of the top CBs in the league. Nothing is guaranteed, obviously, but he’s trending way up and I don’t have any good reason to believe he’ll start falling. Reshad Jones and to a longer extent Cam Wake have been the heart and soul of the defense for years. No reason to think that Howard can’t be the next guy to lead the D for the next few years.
Here’s to Howard continuing to inflect his will in training camp and for the others on the team to get on his level.