Former Patriots linebacker Dont’a Hightower is returning to New England because the Patriots’ new linebackers coach, his company introduced Friday. Hightower follows within the footsteps of his former teammate and coach, Jerod Mayo, who returned to the group 5 years in the past as an assistant. As the Patriots’ new head coach, Mayo has accomplished his defensive workers by hiring Hightower to the final place coach emptiness on that aspect of the ball.
Hightower, 33, retired after the 2021 season and has been out of soccer ever since. He spent the final two years of his profession with Mayo as his place coach, and performed along with his boss from 2012-2015. Mayo spoke about recruiting Hightower to his workers final April, when requested about Hightower’s latest retirement and the potential of turning into a head coach in the future.
“I think Hightower would be a phenomenal coach,” Mayo instructed reporters. “So we’ll see. When I get a chance to run my own ship, I’ll try to recruit him.”
Hightower received three Super Bowls and made two Pro Bowls throughout his nine-year NFL profession. He entered the league as a first-round select of Alabama in 2012, began as a rookie and performed inside and out of doors linebacker for the Patriots. Hightower was a power in opposition to the run and as a cross rusher. He additionally made a behavior of taking part in his greatest within the Super Bowl, finally incomes the nickname “Mr. February” from Bill Belichick.
Hightower made his ultimate Pro Bowl in 2019, when he led the NFL’s top-ranked protection in the course of the common season. He sat out the next 12 months as a result of issues over the COVID-19 pandemic and returned in 2021 to start out all 15 of his sport appearances, recording 64 tackles, 1.5 sacks, a cross deflection and 4 QB hits.
Over his profession, Hightower performed in 117 regular-season video games and totaled 569 tackles, 27 sacks, 67 QB hits, an interception, two compelled fumbles and a security.
“High and I have always had a great relationship. I was older. He was like a young pup,” Mayo mentioned. “But he was very smart. He was very athletic. I got a chance to play beside him. I got a chance to coach him. There aren’t many people like Hightower in terms of just his smarts.”
Hightower joins DeMarcus Covington (defensive coordinator), Jerry Montgomery (line of defense), Brian Belichick (safeties) and Mike Pellegrino on the Patriots’ defensive workers. It’s doable Mayo will proceed so as to add extra coaches, with the Patriots using two linebackers coaches in recent times.