I think Howard is a skilled goaltender, but he will not be very successful at the NHL level. His rebound control will always be a problem and his foot speed is pretty slow compared to all of the successful goalies at his age and size. Basically, I see him as nothing more than a decent backup. He has no elite skills in any one area of his game. In Detroit, he'll make a great backup, but he does not have the mental strength needed to win close games where he's only seeing 20-25 shots per game.
I think Detroit is better off harvesting Daniel Larsson. That kid is legit!!
So to be brief, Howard does NOT have the "game" to be ELITE in Detroit...but he would make a decent, affordable backup!