Rob Ninkovich “not closing the door” on possibly returning

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Rob Ninkovich won’t be playing with the Patriots when they take on the Chiefs on Thursday night because he announced his retirement at the start of training camp.

Ninkovich’s retirement was followed by the release of Kony Ealy and the injury that landed Derek Rivers on injured reserve, leaving the team thinner on the edge than it looked like they’d be when camp got underway. During an appearance on CSN New England, Ninkovich was asked if there’d been any talk about returning to restore some depth.

Ninkovich said he’s been spending time with family, including a few last times with his grandfather before he died, and has not heard anything from the team, but admitted he’s thought about it and isn’t going to rule it out.

“I’m not closing the door. I’m not going to close the door. Just in case, you know, if something happened,” Ninkovich said.

The Patriots traded for Cassius Marsh last weekend and his arrival gives them a little more depth up front on defense, so there doesn’t appear to be any immediate reason to expect Ninkovich will walk back through the locker room doors. If that should change, though, Ninkovich has made it known that he’ll at least pick up the phone should the team give him a call.

12 responses to “Rob Ninkovich “not closing the door” on possibly returning

  1. He was an excellent player for the Patriots and, no doubt, saying goodbye to something you have done all your life and had great success at is difficult.
    Rob: thanks for the memories go enjoy the rest of life away from football.

  2. What player (just reitred or still playing) would not pick up the phone to a call from Belichick – especially late in the season if Pats were headed to the playoffs but hit with injuries?

  3. Great player and selfless teammate. No matter what they have worked out at home, if Belichick calls it will go a lot like this:

    “Rob.”
    “Sir?”
    “We need you to come in.”
    “Yes sir.”
    “And bring your pads.”
    “On my way sir.”

  4. I know nothing. I live 900 miles from Foxboro

    He was so fired up for the season doing the interview circuit, then abruptly retired a couple of days later out of nowhere that I speculated that he might have gotten popped again for PED’s and retired so he wouldn’t be remembered as a two time offender.

    I hope he does come back if for nothing else than to set my mind at ease. (yes it is a very selfish impulse on my part.)

    It’ll be strange not to see a #50 on defense. (Vrable followed by Nink)

  5. Mr. Wright 212 says:
    September 7, 2017 at 11:18 am
    He must be cycled off and thinks he can beat a test.
    _______________

    Your ‘contributions’ are always such a bright little ray of sunshine.
    In a local interview Ninkovich stated his grandfather had suffered a stroke and wasn’t doing well. That kind of sealed the deal for him with his retirement decision as he was able to be there with his family. His grandfather has since passed. As a person that often chides others over their lack of sensitivity and awareness you might want to revisit your own.

  6. Love Nink, sad to see him retire, but I don’t buy this light switch approach where you think it’s time to retire, take time off, and then just think you can come back.

    Very, very hard to do.

    Don’t expect Marsawn Lynch to be close to his prime-era self either.

    Age 30 is the new borderline for NFL players now. Used to be 35, now it’s 30.

  7. factschecker says:
    September 7, 2017 at 11:14 am
    I know nothing. I live 900 miles from Foxboro

    He was so fired up for the season doing the interview circuit, then abruptly retired a couple of days later out of nowhere that I speculated that he might have gotten popped again for PED’s and retired so he wouldn’t be remembered as a two time offender.

    I hope he does come back if for nothing else than to set my mind at ease. (yes it is a very selfish impulse on my part.)

    It’ll be strange not to see a #50 on defense. (Vrable followed by Nink)

    7 2 Rate This

    —————-

    Don’t buy that at all. Bruschi said BB showed Nink some tape and heavily hinted he was about done and likely din’t want to be cut/BB didn’t want to have to cut him.

    But, yes, I do agree last year’s PED pop was tied to him realizing he was losing it.

    I am still laughing at how Peyton Manning, James Harrison, Clay Matthews, Julius Peppers, etc, all got away with cheating with Goodell doing that to protect Manning in his last season.

    The last guy, Neal from GB, RETIRED after 2015, and right then and there, I knew his name wouldn’t even be mentioned once Goodel lied, claiming there was an “investigation” out of the blue one day.

    There was no investigation. Goodell covered it up with Manning and that was that.

    Goodell has stamped the idea that Guyer’s PEDs from China are fully legal in the NFL by lying to the NFL customer yet again.

  8. tylawspick6 says:
    September 7, 2017 at 12:00 pm

    I am still laughing at how Peyton Manning, James Harrison, Clay Matthews, Julius Peppers, etc, all got away with cheating with Goodell doing that to protect Manning in his last season.
    ——————-

    If you really believe Goodell would let Harrison off on anything you haven’t paid much attention to what’s gone on between them.

  9. factschecker says:
    September 7, 2017 at 11:14 am
    I know nothing. I live 900 miles from Foxboro

    He was so fired up for the season doing the interview circuit, then abruptly retired a couple of days later out of nowhere that I speculated that he might have gotten popped again for PED’s and retired so he wouldn’t be remembered as a two time offender.

    I hope he does come back if for nothing else than to set my mind at ease. (yes it is a very selfish impulse on my part.)

    It’ll be strange not to see a #50 on defense. (Vrable followed by Nink)
    ——————————-
    Nink didn’t hit the TV shows until he retired not before.

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