The worst-case speculations are true as New England Patriots linebacker Dont’a Hightower has been ruled out for the season with a torn pectoral muscle.
NFL insider Ian Rapaport tweeted today confirming the news:
#Patriots LB Dont’a Hightower has a torn pec and is out for the year, source said.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) October 26, 2017
With Hightower now out, linebackers David Harris and Marquis Flowers are now going to be thrusted into the spotlight.
While he hasn’t seen a lot of playing time, Harris has drawn the praise from Patriots head coach Bill Belichick on his ability to be in the right position at his age.
“He did all the right things that we would want him to do from an assignment standpoint,” Belichick told ESPN.com. “He gave us some good plays, he was in on a few plays. He handled the communication and the front well. We’ll see if we can build on it.”
Reinforcements could also be on the way as soon as the Nov. 12 scheduled matchup against the Denver Broncos as linebacker Shea McClellin is eligible to return after being put on short-term IR as a result of an undisclosed injury.
The Hightowerless Patriots will take on the Los Angeles Chargers this Sunday at 1:00 p.m. on CBS to try and improve to 6-2 on the year.