Sadly I wasn't able to blog it when it broke, but Patriots defensive jack of all trades, Rob Ninkovich retired last week. Souped he just posted this on IG to make my late homage to him a little more relevant.
The 11 year NFL vet out of Purdue spent the last 8 seasons with New England, and was a key contributor to the Patriots second (and still going) dynasty. In 8 seasons Nink had 46 sacks and 469 tackles, but his contributions to the team cannot not just be explained in stats. He was a leader on and off the field. Ninkovich was part of a run that included two Super Bowl wins, the 2011 AFC Championship, and six straight trips to the AFC Championship game.
Now Ninko in the bask of retirement is letting us know he had the time of his life, and you know what so did we. After a decade of no Lombardi's Ninko was a key piece of the Patriots defense that shutout the Seahawks in the 4th quarter of Super Bowl XLIX, en route to at the time the biggest comeback in Super Bowl history, capped off by his key 3rd down sack of Russell Wilson.
Nink was never going to be an All-Pro but he was a textbook Patriot who used his versatility to best help the team in anyway that they needed, much like the previous #50 in Foxboro, Mike Vrabel. He was a captain, and fan favorite who will be missed in the locker room and by Patriot fans alike. Hell of a career for Rob Ninkovich.