According to Mike Reiss of ESPN Boston, defensive end Rob Ninkovich has reached a three year contract extension with the New England Patriots. Ninkovich is one of the most important players on this Patriots defense, and I think he is one of the most underrated players in the league. The extension is worth more than $15 million, and he gets $8.5 guaranteed. Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweeted out that he is now the third highest-paid Patriots defensive player.
Ninkovich has amassed 14.5 sacks over the last two seasons, but his worth cannot be defined by stats. He is one of the best in the league at setting the edge on the outside, and making sure that the Patriots don’t get beat for big gains. This is one of the most important aspects of playing sound run defense, and Ninkovich leads the Patriots in this category.
It is obvious that Ninkovich is a key leader to the Pats, and locking him up is a great move by Belichick and that front office. Leadership in the locker room is extremely important, and when you have a guy that can not only be a good leader, but can produce on the field, then you need to make sure he stays on your team for a long time.