Several players have already opted out of the 2020 NFL season due to the concerns over the coronavirus. The latest comes in the form of 3-time Super Bowl champion and New England Patriots inside linebacker Dont’a Hightower, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.

Hightower was set to make $8 million this season with the Patriots, and he just welcomed a child on July 16.

Hightower became the second former Alabama player and the fourth Patriot to opt out of the season. The first former Tide player to opt out was Seattle Seahawks offensive lineman Chance Warmack.

Obviously, New England’s defense will miss its co-captain Hightower immensely. He was selected to the AFC Pro Bowl in 2019 for the second time in his career.


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Players who voluntarily opt out receive a $150,000 stipend. A player who opts out for medical reasons will receive $300,000.

The deadline for players to make a decision on the season is August 3.