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Cowboys Trade Rumors Die; New Deal For Dolphins CB Xavien Howard

The Dolphins have themselves put a fork in the Cowboys rumor by creating with Howard a new contract that keeps him in Miami.

OXNARD, Calif. - The Dallas Cowboys have long-recognized the need to invest in their cornerback room. Does that mean, regarding a trade for disgruntled Miami Dolphins standout corner Xavien Howard, that it was being worked on?

ESPN seemed to think so. Two team sources have told us all along that ESPN is wrong.

And now the Dolphins have themselves put a fork in the rumor by creating with Howard a new contract that keeps him in Miami. The re-do gives him the chance to make an extra $4.5 million this year, which would bump him to $16,285,294, which would make him the league's highest-paid corner for the 2021 NFL season.

How and why did media observers ever think Dallas was going to do that ... plus trade away a first-round pick?

From Bristol a few days ago, ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler tried to build a case based on “rumors in league circles.”

Via Fowler: “Rumors persisted in league circles that Dallas looked into a Howard deal at some point this offseason, but aside from that … this is a Dallas move. All splash, and it solves a big need. The Cowboys’ pass rush needs more production, and what better way to help than with a true shutdown corner to buy rushers time.”

Respectfully, this is and always was gibberish. Why? Because Dallas believes it did the needed “investment” work the last two Aprils.

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The Cowboys entered camp here in Oxnard with many thinking they have a need at the position. But team management has three takes on where Dallas is now at the position, as one of our two “no” sources guide us:

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1) We've made our investment. Trevon Diggs is at one corner. He was a second-round pick in the 2020 NFL Draft. Rookies Kelvin Joseph and Nahshon Wright, respectively, are competing at the other corner. Not counting another second-year prospect, Reggie Robinson, that means three premium picks used at the position in 13 months. ... all of course on cheap rookie contracts.

That's the investment. It helps the reasoning that the group is performing well here at training camp in Oxnard, and in the Thursday preseason-opening loss to the Steelers at Canton That's no promise that one of these "thrown darts'' is going to become a Pro Bowler. But that's the goal of the investment.

2) The salary is exorbitant. Howard, just two years ago, signed a Miami deal totaling $75 million over five years ... And here he wanted a new contract.

Is the 28-year-old Texas native worth the price? At this time and place, Dallas' answer was "no.''

3) The 'Double-Cost' cannot be stomached. Cowboys management has on occasion "paid double'' for a player; that is, give him the big money after trading for him utilizing a premium draft pick.

That's two payments.

If a player is that special and the need is that glaring and the cap is that open? A team should do it. But Xavien Howard to Dallas? No matter what ESPN tried to peddle … Team management always was, right or wrong, telling you these are the three reasons the Cowboys are saying "no.'' And now that the Dolphins have said "yes,'' we can move onto other wheels on the rumor mill.

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