Patriots re-sign Dont’a Hightower

AFC DIVISIONAL PLAYOFF GAME BETWEEN THE NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS AND KANSAS CITY CHIEFS Patriots Dont'a Hightower celebrates after a play in the fourth quarter Saturday, Jan. 16,  2016 at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, MA. (John Tlumacki/Globe Staff)
The new pact is for four years and $43.5 million. –John Tlumacki / The Boston Globe

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BOSTON (AP) — The Patriots have re-signed Pro Bowl linebacker Dont’a Hightower.

Hightower’s agency, SportsTrust Advisors, tweeted the agreement on Wednesday and his agent Pat Dye, Jr confirmed it. The new pact is for four years and $43.5 million.

It brings back one of the Patriots’ biggest free agents, who has helped New England win two Super Bowls in his five NFL seasons. He has 372 tackles and 17 sacks since being a first-round pick out of Alabama in 2012.

He also had one of the biggest plays in last month’s Super Bowl. He forced a fumble on a sack on Atlanta’s Matt Ryan in the fourth quarter, helping swing the momentum New England’s way in its comeback 34-28 overtime victory.

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Hightower, 27, took free agent visits with both the New York Jets and Pittsburgh Steelers, but will return to captain a defense that allowed a league-low 15.6 points per game during the regular-season in 2016.

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Follow Kyle Hightower on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/khightower

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For more NFL coverage: http://pro32.ap.org and http://twitter.com/AP_NFL

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