The Magpies are second from bottom in the Premier League table at the moment and are in real danger of getting relegated to the Championship at the end of the season.
Sunderland are also in danger of going down to the second tier of English football.
The former England international, who now works as a football pundit, believes that Sunderland defensive midfielder Lee Cattermole is the type of player that Newcastle need in the Championship.
“The Championship is such a difficult, horrible league to get out of,” Howey told The Sunderland Echo when asked which of the two North East sides are best equipped to come back up. “The games are constant. Newcastle’s players aren’t suited to that; they won’t like that.
“Sunderland have those type of players, the likes of Lee Cattermole - who is horrible but he would be great in the Championship! The type of players you want.
“Newcastle don’t have anyone like that. But then, they could go there and because of the quality completely run away with it.”
Cattermole is not one of the best defensive midfielders in the Premier League - there is a reason why he is playing for Sunderland - but he is a player that the Black Cats would need in the Championship.
The Championship is a very tough and physical league, and the presence of the 28-year-old Englishman would be an important and positive factor.
If Newcastle do go down to the Championship at the end of the season, then they will have to sign tough and hard-tackling players like Cattermole.