Report: Dolphins' Howard holding out, unhappy about earning less than Jones

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Miami Dolphins fans shouldn't be surprised if Xavien Howard doesn't attend the team's mandatory minicamp this week.

The star cornerback, who led the NFL with 10 interceptions last season, is unhappy with his current contract situation, and his dissatisfaction mainly stems from being paid less than fellow teammate Byron Jones, a source told Miami Herald's Barry Jackson, Adam Beasley, and Armando Salguero.

Howard wasn't present for the first day of minicamp Tuesday, NFL Network's Tom Pelissero reports. Head coach Brian Flores confirmed the absence is related to his deal.

"It's pretty clear this is a contract situation," Flores said. "We've talked about it internally. That's what I believe it is. We have had discussions and will continue to have those discussions."

Howard became one of the NFL's highest-paid cornerbacks after inking a five-year, $75.25-million extension with the Dolphins in 2019. One year later, Miami also handed a massive deal to Jones, signing him for five years and $82.5 million.

Jones ($16.5 million) and Howard ($15.05 million) currently rank fifth and sixth in average annual salary for cornerbacks, respectively, according to Spotrac.

Howard is set to earn $12 million in non-guaranteed money this year, while Jones will make $14 million guaranteed, per ESPN's Jeremy Fowler.

"X is a unique situation," Flores said. "He was extended and now we're talking about a renegotiation of an extension."

He added: "We love X. He's very productive. He's a team player. He's an important player on this team. Unique situation. We want to keep him here."

Howard recently hired a new agent, David Canter, who has reportedly contacted the Dolphins about restructuring the deal.

Howard, 27, earned his first career All-Pro nod last year after amassing a league-leading 20 pass breakups. Meanwhile, Jones finished his debut season in Miami with two interceptions and four passes defended.

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Report: Dolphins' Howard holding out, unhappy about earning less than Jones
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