Patriots LB Dont’a Hightower: ‘Me and Jamie [Collins] Were Real Close’


 New England Patriots linebacker Dont’a Hightower was shocked when he found out Jamie Collins was traded, but understands it’s a business.

Like Jamie Collins, New England Patriots and team captain Dont’a Hightower is playing for that next contract.  Following the trade of his fellow teammate and close buddy, Hightower realizes what happened to Collins could’ve happened to him.

While he is not happy to see his partner in crime go, Hightower recognized the business nature of the sport and the trade woke him up to what can happen to him.

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"“It could have happened to me,” Hightower said in an interview with the Boston Herald. “Just as easy as it was Jamie, it could have been me. Just like Tom (Brady) said, it could happen to anybody. It’s part of football. It’s the business aspect of it, but honestly, there’s not really much we ourselves can do. If you get traded, it’s not like you can say no. Just try to keep that in the back of your mind and try to handle business the best way I can, and that’s on the field.”"

The first-time team captain realizes he will lose other close friends over the years.  He already saw defensive end Chandler Jones get sent to the Arizona Cardinals prior to the season.  Like Brady, however, Hightower has fused himself as a team leader and someone who has adapted very well to the Patriot way and a player who will be a Patriot for a very long time.

Related Story: Dont’a Hightower Needs Jamie Collins

"“More shocked than anything,” Hightower said in reaction to the trade. “Obviously, me and Jamie were real close over the years since him coming in as a rookie and us growing up together on the field. I don’t think our relationship is going to change. He hit me up and shot me some texts in the morning, and we were kind of joking around. It sucks, but it’s just part of football.”"

The Hightower and Collins’ bond grew strong during Collins’ rookie season and the following season when the team won Super Bowl XLIX.  Along with Jerod Mayo, they formed one of the top linebacker trios in the NFL.  Now it is just Hightower left to lead a new group of linebackers.

Next: Patriots QB Tom Brady Named AFC Offensive Player Of The Month

As an impending free agent, it is very important that the New England Patriots lock him up long term sooner rather than later.  Perhaps that is truly Bill Belichick’s plan.  Let’s hope so.