The Miami Dolphins have issued an emphatic denial of a report suggesting the team was exploring trades for star cornerback Xavien Howard.

This statement comes after the South Florida Sun Sentinel reported Tuesday the Dolphins were indeed shopping Howard.

“The report in the South Florida Sun Sentinel is factually inaccurate and based on rumors,” the team said, via Barry Jackson of the Sun Sentinel. “The paper practiced poor journalism by not reaching out to the team for comment or the chance to respond to the story. We are not exploring any trades regarding Xavien Howard.”

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Omar Kelly of the Sun Sentinel’s original report suggested the Dolphins already had an offer on the table for Howard in advance of the Nov. 3 trade deadline:

According a league source, the Dolphins are fielding offers for the Pro Bowl talent, who has pulled down four interceptions in the past four games, and 16 interceptions in the 39 games he’s played since the 2017 season.

The source said the Dolphins already have an offer on the table for Howard, and are seriously considering moving the 27-year-old before the NFL trade deadline, which is next Tuesday at 4 p.m.

Kelly noted Howard has yet to ask for a trade, though he reportedly wonders how he fits into the team’s future.

However, Miami’s assertive denial of these reports suggest they value Howard quite a bit. The Dolphins signed the 27-year-old to an extension ahead of the 2019 season, and he has been immensely productive this year.

Howard already has four interceptions on the year, including one in each of the past four games. He has also recorded six passes defended.

The Dolphins could probably get a lot of value for Howard. But they would be remiss to trade him in a season where they have made significant progress on both sides of the ball.