Dont'a Hightower: 'Relaxed approach helped me improve'

Dont'a Hightower #54 of the New England Patriots celebrates the win over the Philadelphia Eagles on August 9, 2013
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New England Patriots linebacker Dont'a Hightower believes that he improved towards the end of the 2013 season as he became more relaxed going into his side's matches.

New England Patriots linebacker Dont'a Hightower has expressed his belief that his relaxed approach to the end of the 2013 season helped him improve his level of performances.

The 24-year-old struggled when veteran Jerod Mayo sustained a season-ending injury, which forced him into the leadership role on the field.

However, towards the latter end of the campaign Hightower began flourish making several plays, including an interception of Andrew Luck in his side's divisional round playoff win over the Indianapolis Colts.

"The thing that I want to work on probably the most is just having a lot more fun," Hightower told reporters.

"Those last couple games of the season, whenever I got a lot more comfortable and relaxed, I was just having fun, and I played a lot better.

"So going out, playing stress free, and [not] worrying about things, I feel like that will elevate my play a lot more."

Hightower recorded 97 tackles and one sack for the Patriots in the 2013 regular season.

Dont'a Hightower #54 of the New England Patriots celebrates the win over the Philadelphia Eagles on August 9, 2013
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