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Patriots Linebacker Dont'a Hightower's Recovery is "On Schedule"

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The Patriots star linebacker is recovering from a shoulder injury.

Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

New England Patriots linebacker Dont'a Hightower is recovering from surgery on his labrum (shoulder) that took place in February, after the Super Bowl. Hightower injured his shoulder against the Packers in Week 13, but still finished the season. The 6'2, 265-pound linebacker helped stop Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch on the goal line at the end of the Super Bowl.

At a recent event in Lowell, Massachusetts, Hightower spoke with Joe McDonald of ESPN to talk about his recovery process.

"Honestly, I don't have a target date," [Hightower] said. "I've seen doc, and everything is going great right now. I'm right on track, if not a little ahead of schedule. It's something that's going to take time. I can't say 'three weeks' or whatever. It feels great. I'm doing good. Doc loved everything. He said I'm ahead of schedule, so I'll just keep doing what I'm doing."

Hightower is projected to return to the field in time with the season opener against the Steelers. There will likely be some rust to shake off, but don't be surprised if Hightower is lining up at middle linebacker for Week 1.