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Dont’a Hightower on why third down is a ‘fun down’

05.01.14 at 1:04 pm ET

FOXBORO — Linebacker Dont’a Hightower has always been straightforward when it comes to speaking with the media. And so on Thursday morning, when the topic on what he’d like to be doing when he hits the field in 2014 came up, he didn’t hesitate to offer an answer.

“Third down, honestly, I’m just gonna put it out there, I’d much rather rush or blitz than cover. Zone, man, or whatever,” he said Thursday during a break in offseason workouts at Gillette Stadium.

“Third down is a fun down — whether you’re covering or whatever you’re doing — because you can do different kind of things and come at the quarterback all kind of ways. As long as I’m able to be on the field on third down, or whatever they ask me to do, I’m willing to do it.”

In his first two seasons in the NFL, Hightower has not seen a lot of work as a pass rusher in sub packages and other passing downs, instead working more in coverage. While he’d like the opportunity to chase after the quarterback — as opposed to running backs, tight ends or wide receivers — he acknowledges that’s not his decision. Instead, it’s “a Bill Belichick thing.”

“That’s up to the coaching staff, where they want to move people around and the scheme they might have or whatever,” he said. “Again, if that’s what they want me to do, or they ask me if I want to do it, of course. But it will definitely be a Bill Belichick thing.’€

Read More: Bill Belichick, Dont'a Hightower,



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