AFC East Notes: Dolphins, Jets, Patriots


Dolphins CB Xavien Howard believes they are “floating under the radar” as a team and he would not be surprised if they put together a successful season. 

We’re floating under the radar right now. I love feeling like an underdog, but I just tell people, ‘Don’t be surprised with what ya’ll see from the Miami Dolphins this year,’” said Howard, via SiriusXM NFL Radio

Regarding Dolphins’ new HC Brian Flores, Howard said the coach preaches “discipline” and being the “best-conditioned team in the league.”

He’s [Flores] a great guy. One thing I know, discipline and being the best-conditioned team in the league, that’s what he preaches every day and he stands by that.


  •’s Matt Stypulkoski grades the Jets defensive tackle position as a B+, noting the addition of first-round DT Quinnen Williams as a major positive. 
  • Stypulkoski says the ability for DE Leonard Williams to slide inside and moving last year’s starting DT Steve McLendon into more of a backup role are also both positive developments. 
  • Stypulkoski adds the only concern is depth and inexperience, as Quinnen Williams is a rookie and there’s not much behind second-year DT Nathan Shepherd


  • According to ESPN’s Mike Reiss, former Patriots players Kevin Faulk, Deion Branch and Troy Brown helped the team run drills during the spring.
  • Reiss says if any wanted to coach full-time, there would likely be a spot for them on New England’s staff. 
  • Reiss mentions the Patriots are using a combination of staff members to fill former character coach Jack Easterby‘s position.
  • Reiss thinks the Patriots could use their remaining open roster slot on a tight end to bolster depth behind Matt LaCosse and Ben Watson.
  • According to Jeff Howe, the Patriots’ coaching staff is “fired up over what they’ve seen from linebacker Jamie Collins, both on the field and in the building.”

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