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Patriots lose DE Rob Ninkovich for four games

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By Anthony Caruso III

The New England Patriots are going to be without quarterback Tom Brady for the first four games of the season. Now, defensive end Rob Ninkovich has been hit with a four-game suspension.

Ninkovich violated the league’s substance-abuse policy. At this time, it’s not clear what banned substance he tested positive for.

Rob Ninkovich (Getty Images)

Rob Ninkovich (Getty Images)

He was already expected to miss the team’s first two games because of a torn triceps.

This gives him more time to heal from his injury and not force the team to bring him back when he may not be back at 100%. With this suspension, he loses four game checks — and can’t be around the team until Week 5 like Brady.

The Patriots may have known about his suspension before it was announced on Friday. Maybe they got news last week and that’s why they traded for Barkevious Mingo with the Cleveland Browns.

The 32-year-old had 52 tackles and 6.5 sacks, while causing a fumble and recovering a fumble.

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