Sep 22, 2013; Foxborough, MA, USA; Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Josh Freeman (5) is pressured by New England Patriots defensive lineman Rob Ninkovich (50) during the third quarter of a game at Gillette Stadium. The Patriots defeated the Buccaneers 23-3. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Patriots, Rob Ninkovich agree to extension

It was a good day for New England Patriots defensive lineman/linebacker Rob Ninkovich on Sunday. The eight-year pro had five tackles and half of a sack in a 23-3 victory over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers that improved the Patriots to 3-0. He also signed a three-year contract extension that will keep him in a Patriots’ uniform through 2016.

“I’m happy to be here, I’m happy to stick around,” Ninkovich said Monday in an interview on Boston sports radio station WEEI. “The Kraft family and my family worked it out to where it works well for both sides and I’m happy to be here for the next three, four years now.”

According to Mike Reiss and Field Yates of ESPN Boston, the deal is worth $8.5 million guaranteed and could be worth over $15 million when it’s all said and done.

Ninkovich was originally a fifth round pick out of Purdue by the New Orleans Saints. After two stints with the Saints and a season with the Miami Dolphins sandwiched in between, Ninkovich joined the Patriots in 2009. Ninkovich now has 20 sacks since joining the Patriots, including a career-high 8.o last season.

On the season, Ninkovich has 19 tackles, 0.5 sacks, one forced fumble and one fumble recovery.

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