BOSTON (CBS) — Passing the ball will be a little bit easier for Tom Brady on Sunday in Miami.

That’s because Xavien Howard, a budding star at cornerback, won’t be playing due to a knee injury. Head coach Adam Gase confirmed the news on Friday.

The third-year pro missed practice all week long, after suffering the injury on a late interception Sunday against the Bills.

With seven interceptions, Howard leads the NFL in that category. Last year when the Patriots visited Miami, Howard twice picked off Brady.

Howard’s absence will likely lead to Miami starting Minkah Fitzpatrick and Bobby McCain at the cornerback spots, with Torry McTyer seeing increased action. McTyer has been on the field for just 28 percent of Miami’s defensive snaps this season. Howard had played 99.1 percent of Miami’s defensive snaps.

Howard’s not the only high-profile cornerback on this week’s injury report, though, as Stephon Gilmore was added to the report, listed as a limited participant in Friday’s practice due to an ankle injury. Gilmore’s listed as questionable for Sunday.

Gilmore hadn’t been on the injury report all week.

Here’s the complete practice report for both teams:


No Players Listed.

No Players Listed.

TE Dwayne Allen – Knee
CB Stephon Gilmore – Ankle

Patrick Chung was removed from the injury report.


C Jake Brendel – Knee
CB Xavien Howard – Knee

No Players Listed

WR Danny Amendola – Knee
C Travis Swanson – Anke

Tune in to Sunday’s Patriots-Dolphins tilt on WBZ-TV — the home of the New England Patriots. Coverage begins Friday night at 7pm with Patriots All Access, and we get you ready for the game Sunday morning with Patriots GameDay at 11:30 a.m. And stick with WBZ-TV after the game as we wrap it all up on Patriots 5th Quarter!


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