The two sides met last week and have agreed to initial terms on a new contract.
Hightower, 29, has had a difficult path in the NFL and was out of football for several years after tearing his ACL in 2011. He was cut twice by the Saints this season before being re-signed in the middle of the year as a late-season replacement for the injured Khiry Robinson.
Filling in for the injured Mark Ingram, Hightower racked up 456 total yards and four touchdowns in the final four games. He'll serve as the handcuff for Ingram in 2016.