Dont’a Hightower a Fit for the Steelers at 24?


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Walter Football, one of the big Draft sites, has the Steelers taking Dont’a Hightower, the inside linebacker from Alabama. Many feel it’s a fit for the Steelers, as he would take over for released ILB James Farrior.

Pittsburgh needs youth in its front seven, and Hightower has Steelers’ pick written all over him.

At 6-foot-2, 265 pounds, Hightower is a physical, in-the-box defender. He regularly beat collegiate offensive linemen without difficulty. The intelligent junior was the signal-caller for the Crimson Tide defense, a complex collegiate scheme. At the Combine, he ran the 40 in 4.62, a good time considering his heavy weight.

Though a season-ending knee injury cost him the majority of the 2009 season, Hightower came back in 2010 to record 69 tackles with 3.5 tackles for a loss. This season, another year removed from the injury, he looked much better. Hightower was a real force in many games in 2011. He shows the ability to rush the passer well on blitzes and is a tough run defender. Hightower has also demonstrated the ability to move to outside linebacker on passing downs and rush off the edge. Thus, he can be a three-down defender in the NFL.

Hightower had 85 tackles with 11 tackles for a loss, four sacks, one interception, one forced fumble and three passes batted away this year. He had a dominant game against Tennessee and played well in both contests versus LSU. Against Georgia Southern, Hightower blocked a field goal and it looked like he was spiking a volleyball. Hightower is a real presence in the tackle box.

Source: Steelers Gab

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