Former Patriots linebacker Dont’a Hightower is returning to New England as a member of the staff of new head coach Jerod Mayo.
His agency, SportsTrust Advisors, broke the news on social media Friday.
The 33-year-old Hightower, who will coach the linebackers, played his entire career with the Patriots, who selected him with the 25th overall pick of the 2012 NFL Draft out of Alabama. He and Mayo were teammates on the Patriots defense from 2012-15.
Hightower won three Super Bowls in nine seasons with the Patriots. He was a two-time Pro Bowl selection and played 117 games (114 starts) with the Patriots.
In talking with reporters last April, Mayo mentioned Hightower as a future coach.
“I think Hightower would be a phenomenal coach,” Mayo said, per USA Today. “So, we’ll see. When I get a chance to run my own ship, I’ll try to recruit him.”
Mayo was the inside linebackers coach on Bill Belichick’s staff from 2019-23 before being promoted to head coach upon Belichick’s departure last month.