Howard could miss Pats game

CB sits out 2nd straight prac­tice with sore knee

Orlando Sentinel - - SPORTS FRIDAY - By Safid Deen

The Mi­ami Dol­phins’ chances of an AFC play­off berth are tee­ter­ing on each of the fi­nal four games this sea­son. And there is a good chance they could be with­out their best player as they aim to make a fi­nal push.

Dol­phins cor­ner­back Xavien Howard did not prac­tice on Thurs­day, and his re­turn from a left knee in­jury does not seem im­mi­nent.

It is likely Howard, the NFL leader with seven in­ter­cep­tions this sea­son, will not play for the Dol­phins (6-6) in Sun­day’s game against Tom Brady and the New Eng­land Patriots (10-3) in Hard Rock Sta­dium.

“We have to see how fast a healer he is. We have to make sure we do the right thing for him,” Gase said of Howard. “When he’s ready to go, he’ll be ready to go. We can’t put him in a bad po­si­tion.”

Gase did not want to say whether Howard needed surgery to rec­tify the in­jury suf­fered against the Bills last week.

Howard took a hit to the left knee af­ter be­ing tack­led on a re­turn for his sec­ond in­ter­cep­tion against Buf­falo.

Howard’s per­for­mance marked the sec­ond straight game he had two in­ter­cep­tions, and the fifth time in his ca­reer that he has se-

JOHN MCCALL/SUN SEN­TINEL

Bills wide re­ceiver Zay Jones can’t get his hands on the ball as Dol­phins cor­ner­back Xavien Howard closes in Sun­day at Hard Rock Sta­dium.

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