The 31-year-old midfielder spent four hugely successful years at Oakwell before leaving in 2009.
Now after finishing last season with Birmingham, following a stint in Bulgaria with CSKA Sofia, Howard is considering a move back to Barnsley.
Barnsley opened talks over the weekend, with chief executive Ben Mansford confirming: "Brian is regularly linked with this club because of what he did in the past but I can confirm he is one of our targets.
"There are other options for us and it is probably 50/50 whether we sign him."
Talks are yet to reach agreement, but Sky Sports understand they are continuing and Howard could yet return to the club where he still a firm fans' favourite.