23-year-old Dont'a Hightower looks like he's adjusting to the league just fine a year after posting 60 tackles, 4 sacks, and 2 fumble recoveries in a rookie season where he battled a hamstring injury. It seems Hightower will start again alongside Jerod Mayo and Brandon Spikes and says he has high expectations heading into his sophomore season:
“As long as I can stay healthy, stay in the playbook and learn from the older guys, I think I’ll just be fine. I’ve always kind of felt that my second year, it always kind of helps me. Everything kind of slows down. I know the playbook a little bit better."

Being a rookie last year he thought he wasn't as much of a leader as he needed to be but thinks that with a year under his belt he can step up into that role:
"I’m able to be a little more vocal so Mayo or Spikes or Devin are not just making the call. I’m able to echo a little bit better. I feel a lot better. Things are slowing down for me. I learned a lot more during in this offseason and OTAs and everything. I’m just looking forward and going out and playing this year.”
Dont'a Hightower is saying all the right things because he really needs to be a leader on this team. The Patriots defense is full of young guys and they need young starters like Dont'a to have a big impact not only on the field, but in the locker room as well. Check us out on twitter! @joeloobs @patriotslife

Boston Herald

Joe Loubier 7/30/2013 02:25:00 AM Edit

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