Hightower had surgery to repair a torn right labrum after reportedly playing in Super Bowl XLIX with "mostly one arm." He had been listed with a shoulder injury on the Patriots' injury report since Week 14.
According to the Globe, Hightower's status for the start of the regular season could be affected by his rehab.
Hightower finished the regular season second on the team with 89 tackles and tied for second with six sacks despite playing only 12 games.
The Patriots won the Super Bowl over the Seattle Seahawks.
- Molly Geary