If there is one player who continually goes under the radar as an ultimate Patriot–a winner who comes up in the biggest of moments–it’s Dont’a Hightower. From a glance some of the most clutch Patriots Super Bowl plays are the Butler interception, the Edelman catch and all of Vinatieri’s kicks. But when you look behind the curtain, there is no bigger big game player than Dont’a Hightower.
The Patriots almost never keep their draft picks in the first round. Bill loves trading down for more picks almost more than he loves left footed punters. In the 2012 Draft people were shocked when the Pats took Hightower and Chandler Jones in the first round. No chance Belichick was passing over a first team All American from Alabama with 2 BCS championships under his belt.
We were all on full contract watch in 2017 when the Hightower had a chance to sign a free agent contract. Hightower has struggled with some injuries over the course of his young career, but he’s played through some tough shit. I usually just sit and refresh Twitter praying to see an announcement of Player X and the Patriots reaching a deal, but I’ve learned the hard way that almost never happens. I personally led the charge to get Wes Welker paid in 2013 and it almost ruined my relationship with Bill Belichick.
Hightower is different. Every season he’s been in the NFL he’s been to at least an AFC Championship, minus last year when he was out for the Super Bowl with a torn pectoral muscle. Certainly have to wonder if the ending would have been a little different with the defensive captain in the game. He doesn’t say much, but he lets his play do the talking. He’s a perfect Patriot, on and off the field.
Dont’a Hightower has made the most of his Super Bowl appearances and one could argue that without him the Patriots could have been on the losing end of at least 2 of them.
In 2014 you might remember the Seahawks had the ball in the Red Zone with a chance to score to win the game. Malcolm Butler is the name everyone was talking about, but if it weren’t for Hightower, Butler may never have gotten his $61 million. With one of the thiccest, angriest RB’s in the game running towards the end zone for a heartbreaking Patriots loss, Dont’a Hightower did this:
And if they ever are working on Hightower’s Hall of Fame induction tape, this play will be #1. The Falcons get a field goal and we never get 28-3 jokes.
Last night, the Patriots held the leagues #2 offense to 3 points. Most people will say there aren’t a lot of highlights from the lowest scoring Super Bowl ever but Super Bowl 53 is Dont’a Hightower porn if I’ve ever seen it.
The Rams had plenty of opportunities to get one big drive and end the game, it was that bad. Not on Hightower’s watch though.
He’s earned his Patriot 4 Life moniker and whenever he walks in to any restaurant or store in New England, it should all be on the house.