Dont’a Hightower off PUP, Nate Solder returns to practice for Patriots

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The regular season starts two weeks from Thursday and the Patriots are getting healthier ahead as that date draws closer.

According to multiple reports, Tuesday’s practice saw linebacker Dont'a Hightower on the field in a helmet and pads for the first time this summer. Hightower had been on the physically unable to perform list due to persistent issues with his knee, although there was never a sign that he was expected to miss any regular season time.

Hightower was joined at practice by left tackle Nate Solder, who has not played in the preseason and not practiced for a while for undisclosed reasons. That should leave him on track to be in the lineup for the start of the regular season as well.

Defensive end Deatrich Wise and tackle LaAdrian Waddle also practiced for the Patriots Tuesday. Both players had been sidelined recently due to concussions.