Linebacker Dont’a Hightower stands out on PFT’s list of the top free agents in this year’s class because he’s ranked near the top and hasn’t signed or been given a franchise tag.
The way Hightower would fit in defenses outside of New England is reportedly a consideration for some other teams, but it appears the Jets are not in that group. Jason LaCanfora of CBS Sports reported Sunday that the Jets “appear to be leading the pack” along with the Patriots when it comes to signing Hightower.
Rich Cimini of ESPN.com followed up with another report of Jets interest in Hightower, although there’s no sign that anything is imminent with one of the teams chasing the Patriots in the AFC East. The timing of the news and the Jets’ presence in the division could be a prod to get the ball moving with New England, although their pace thus far doesn’t suggest they are panicked about Hightower leaving.
The Jets have not been big players in free agency thus far and have appeared to be moving in the opposite direction by parting ways with several high-priced veterans. Acquiring Hightower might lead to another move with David Harris, but that remains a question for another day.