Dont’a Hightower looks like he’s getting a little more trim for the 2019 season. In a recent workout photo alongside fellow Patriots teammate Shaq Mason and Jaguars running back Benny Cunningham, the linebacker looks pretty lean as he gears up for yet another season.
While responding to former NFL cornerback Marquise Cole, Hightower noted that he’s down to about 250-255 pounds at this point in the offseason. For reference, Hightower is officially listed as 260 pounds on the Patriots website, so it’s not a steep drop of weight, but a drop nonetheless. The linebacker did enter the league at 270 pounds.
Here’s the picture of the new-look Hightower, who is repping his former school in Alabama: For the sixth time in franchise history, the New England Patriots are Super Bowl champions! Take a second to sign up for our FREE Patriots newsletter!
This effort by Hightower to drop a little weight before next season could simply be the linebacker striving to be a bit more athletic in 2019, while also maintaining health. In 2018, Hightower enjoyed one of the healthiest seasons of his career playing in 15 regular season games while totaling 48 tackles, a sack and an interception. Hightower also was able to suit up in all three of New England’s playoff contests and totaled six tackles, two sacks and four quarterback hits en route to the third Super Bowl title of his career.
“That means a lot,” Hightower said back in January about having one of the healthiest seasons of his career. “Like you said, my time on the field hasn’t always been as much as I wanted it to be, but this year it’s meant a lot to me. I’ve been out there, I’ve been able to play, I’ve been able to be with my teammates from OTAs to minicamp, so I’ve enjoyed it.”
While Hightower is losing some weight, his quarterback in Tom Brady is reportedly looking to put some on. In a report by Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network on Monday, the quarterback is looking to bulk up before the start of the 2019 season. Tom E. Curran of NBC Sports Boston added to that report saying Brady’s camp is looking for the quarterback to bit a bit more filled out by the end of the 2019 season. Typically, Brady loses about five pounds over the course of an NFL season. At the end of last year, Brady finished at 223 pounds. This time around, the target finishing weight is 232 pounds. Curran notes that Brady’s TB12 diet will stay the same, but the resistance workouts will “employ heavier bands.” Curran says there’s no singular reason for the switch, but the overall effort is to simply keep Brady fresh.
In any event, two of the biggest leaders on the Patriots may be looking a bit different in 2019.