Reports: Patriots lose LB Dont'a Hightower for the season

Shalise Manza YoungYahoo Sports Contributor
Shutdown Corner

The New England Patriots’ defense is losing perhaps the one player it could least afford to lose: linebacker Dont’a Hightower.

Via multiple reports, the sixth-year veteran suffered a torn pectoral in Sunday’s game against Atlanta and will miss the rest of the season.

New England Patriots middle linebacker Dont’a Hightower reportedly suffered a torn pectoral against Atlanta on Sunday and will miss the rest of this season. (AP)
New England Patriots middle linebacker Dont’a Hightower reportedly suffered a torn pectoral against Atlanta on Sunday and will miss the rest of this season. (AP)
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A first-round pick out of Alabama in 2012 and a Pro Bowler last year, Hightower is a smart, versatile playmaker for New England. He’s their communicator in the middle of the field, can stop the run and rush the passer.

Losing him is a big loss for a defense that was already working through some deficiencies.

Hightower suffered a knee injury in the Patriots’ season opener against Kansas City, missing Weeks 2 and 3; he returned against Carolina in Week 4.

The 27-year old was a hero in each of the Patriots’ last two Super Bowl wins, stuffing Marshawn Lynch near the goal line late in Super Bowl XLIX, and strip-sacking Matt Ryan in Super Bowl LI.

 

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