Rob Ninkovich is about to join Tom Brady on the sidelines for the next few weeks. The New England Patriots linebacker told ESPN’s Mike Reiss he’s being suspended for four games after testing positive for a banned substance.
Ninkovich claims he would never knowingly take anything illegal and claims he’s devastated because of the hit his reputation will take:
“Few things are more important to me than my name and reputation. This might call that into question for some, which has me heartbroken. I don’t want to cut any corners. I want to do things the right way, with high integrity, and that’s what I have always wanted to stand for.”
The 32-year-old defensive end has played 116 straight games for the Patriots, and posted 52 tackles and 6.5 sacks in 2015. He had been rehabbing a torn triceps for the last several weeks but was expected back at some point this month.
Ninkovich’s absence will open the door for Trey Flowers, Geneo Grissom or Barkevious Mingo to see more time.