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Former New England Patriots Outside Linebacker Rob Ninkovich. Photo Credit: Jonathan Satriale – Under Creative Commons License

Patriots’ defensive end Rob Ninkovich has reportedly announced his retirement, ending his eleven-year career in the NFL. It’s also worth noting that Ninkovich has been missing since Training Camp begin last Thursday.

Ninkovich explained one of the reasons for his departure from the NFL was from multiple injuries he sustained. “I wanted to make sure I made the right choice,” Ninkovich said. “That was talking with my family, and looking at the pros and cons. And coming in as a guy that had been cut a bunch, I’ve had injuries, I’ve had knee injuries that were close to being career-ending. It’s lasted me 11 years so I’m happy I’ve had that durability there.

It wasn’t an easy decision. After 11 seasons, and 19 seasons total playing football, it’s time for me to walk away. I look forward to the next phase of my life.”

Ninkovich was a two-time Super Bowl Champion with the New England Patriots, who he joined in 2009. While being a two-time captain, Ninkovich only missed one game during his time with the New England Patriots. Playing through injury, Nickovich proved to be one of Patriots’ most durable, and toughest players. Since 2011 to 2015, he had started every regular-season game.

Writer’s take

Any player who’s known for durability deserves a lot of respect among fans and critics alike. An athlete who’s suffered multiple injuries and only missed one regular-season game for four years is pretty incredible. Nickovich’s durability alone makes him a valuable player to any team, showing how reliable he was at all costs, and he was heralded for that in New England. But then again, some might say he should have taken some time off to heal his injuries for his health in the long run. In any case, if Nickovich feels that he no longer has the need to continue his career due to injuries, I believe he made the correct choice.

Sports Al Dente 2019

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