Pats, Hightower Still Communicating About New Deal
While the New England Patriots were hard at work on the first day of the free agency period, signing and re-signing a handful of players, one person they didn’t agree to terms with is their veteran linebacker Dont’a Hightower.
While the Pats still have not got a deal done to bring back Hightower, who was a defensive captain last season, the NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport has reported that the two sides are still in “good communication” as they look to work out a deal.
The #Patriots are in good communication with LB Dont’a Hightower about a possible return, I’m told.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) March 9, 2017
Hightower has drawn interest from the Tennessee Titans and Miami Dolphins, but the Pats still have a strong interest in bringing back the hard-nosed middle linebacker.
Hightower has been a star throughout his time in New England, leading the defense over the past few seasons. Despite the fact that he typically misses a couple games a season due to injuries, he has been a key cog in the New England defense’s success.
Over his five years with the Pats, the Alabama alum has totaled 372 tackles, 17 sacks, 12 passes defensed, two forced fumbles and three recoveries in 67 games.
Bringing Hightower back into the fold would be a huge boost for the Pats, as he plays a large role in their defense and has many responsibilities, but they have proved time and time again that they will not overpay what they value players at.
Hightower is likely looking for around $13 million per year for his new deal.