Grealish was exceptional in the second half of City’s 3-1 win over Leeds, producing two assists for Erling Haaland.
Howey, who played for City between 2000 and 2003, hailed the forward’s performance as he spoke post-match in the Matchday Live studio.
Grealish was the subject of boos from the Elland Road crowd but Howey thinks that the fans would love him in their team.
He said: “I think the Leeds fans will be going for a beer afterwards and, through gritted teeth, they’ll be saying ‘but he’s a good player though isn’t he?’
“Because you see him, he plays with a smile on his face. Sometimes as an opposition player, you’re thinking ‘how can I stop him?’
“He’s very, very good at going up to a defender and just before you think you’ve got it, he nicks it away and you’ve got him. It is frustrating.
“The Leeds fans themselves will be like ‘I can’t stand him, I dislike him so much but I wish we had him’.”
David James, another guest on the Matchday Live Show, hailed Grealish’s selfless attitude in front of goal, as he turned down the chance of scoring himself in order to set up Haaland for a double.
On Grealish, he added: “I think he loves the attention, which is a good thing. But at the same time, he’s focused on doing the right thing.
“Some people get that bit of attention and that one-on-one situation is like ‘here’s my moment’. But he notices Erling there and it’s a great ball with an easier finish for Haaland.
“Even with the second one, there’s an opportunity at 2-0 where you think ‘here’s my moment’ but ‘hang on there’s a guy who I know can put the ball in the back of net’. Fantastic performance!”