Miami Dolphins cornerback Xavien Howard wears his newfound peace on his throat

Three-time Pro Bowl cornerback Xavien Howard is "at peace," and the Miami Dolphins star has the body ink to prove it.

MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. — Miami Dolphins cornerback Xavien Howard has a new look — and a new outlook — to go with his new bag.

Since he last spoke to reporters, which was days after he signed a new $90 million contract, Howard has gotten a tattoo across his neck and throat. The dominant image in the middle? A massive peace sign.

Miami Dolphins cornerback Xavien Howard finds peace

“I’m at peace right now,” Howard explained Wednesday, following the first day of the Dolphins’ mandatory minicamp. “… With football, I’m happy with where I’m at right now.”

For good reason. He finally has the contract and, accordingly, respect he believes his game deserves.

And unlike a year ago, he’s thrilled to be a member of the Dolphins. Last summer, Howard went public with a trade request motivated by money. He signed an extension in 2019 that he eventually discovered wasn’t as great as he thought at the time. (Howard correctly blamed his former agent and ultimately fired him.)

Howard, frustrated that his request to have the deal reworked was being ignored, decided to use the nuclear option.

“I don’t feel the organization has dealt with me in good faith,” Howard announced at the start of 2021’s training camp. “I don’t feel valued or respected by the Dolphins. Just like they take a business-first approach, so can I. That is why I want to make it clear I’m not happy and have requested a trade. Until that trade happens, I am just here so I don’t get fined and will handle myself like professionals do.”

Ultimately, things got worked out. Howard first agreed to a slight contract adjustment and then a total restructure with a significant raise months later.

And accordingly, he was at the first day of the team’s mandatory minicamp — something he skipped in protest last year.

“It’s smooth,” Howard said. “I’m here today. I’m just happy to be here.

“… It feels great to be back out there with the guys. Excited to be around the team. Feeling the energy. Happy to be out there and ready to learn.”

Howard, who made his third Pro Bowl in the four years, has another reason to be happy: He no longer has to carry the Dolphins’ defense. On paper, at least, it’s as talented a group as he’s ever been a part of.

“Yeah, I’m excited about it man,” Howard said. “Right now, you know you can’t do it based on the roster. We’ve got to go play football at the end of the day. But the roster is up to par. I feel like we can do things with that roster we got.”

Adam Beasley is the NFL Director for Pro Football Network. You can read all of Adam’s work here and give him a follow on Twitter @AdamHBeasley.

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