Patriots Should Poach This All-Pro Free Agent From the Dolphins

The New England Patriots should add some experience to their defensive unit with this still-available free agent.


The New England Patriots entered free agency with the most cap space available and after a week of transactions, that hasn't changed much. The Patriots still have over $50 million in cap space as they haven't made a splashy signing so far.

With free agents signing with the other 31 teams left and right, the Patriots have chosen to keep their powder dry. Now, the market has essentially dried out.

But, there are still plenty of free agents available who could make an impact. The Patriots should target a few veterans to help mentor their young core, and Xavien Howard, who spent the last eight seasons with the Miami Dolphins, might be the man for the job.

The Patriots have a promising young core at the cornerback position, with Christian Gonzalez, Alex Austin, and Shaun Wade. As exciting as Gonzalez is, there isn't one player there that is a surefire CB1.

Enter, Howard, who was released by Miami as cap casualty last week.

The four-time Pro Bowler didn't have the best season of his career in 2023, playing in 13 games and registering 45 tackles and one interception.

However, he is still a versatile and productive cornerback who has been a key part of successful defensive units throughout his career, particularly thriving in zone coverage.

Howard would immediately be one of the most established and experienced defensive playmakers on the team. Considering how much money the Patriots have to spend and the fact that Howard will not require a long-term deal that will hamstring New England financially, it is an excellent short-term bet.

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