Patriots linebacker Rob Ninkovich, who projects as a starter on the strong side, was a guest on ESPN Boston Radio with Adam Jones this week. The podcast from the interview can be heard here, and included some of the following thoughts:
1. Settling in after an unusual offseason. "We're excited to play these last two games and then get to the regular season. It's just like riding a bike, you get back into it."
2. Defensive shift for the team. "In training camp, you're always going to do stuff to change things up. Last year, we didn't get as much pressure as we wanted. This year, we're trying to change things up and do something different to get more pressure on the quarterback and get off the field on third down."
3. Focusing on third down. "When you get those long drives going [against you], it's not good. That's our job, to get the offense on the field."
4. Career progression. "The role has definitely changed [from being mostly a special teams player in 2009]. Whatever they ask me to do, I'm out there and I'm going to do it to my best."
5. Jerod Mayo as a pass rusher. "What did he run , a 4.3 '40' or something crazy? He's super fast. Any time he can kind of pin his ears back and get going after the quarterback, it's always going to be disruptive. He's a super athlete, so hey, let him go."
6. Playing in an attacking defense. "It's nice to just go. In years past, when I was a defensive end, it was always attack, attack, attack. It's a fun feeling when you can just go."
7. Thoughts on new additions to the team. "Good. The more great players you can have on your team, it's a good thing. The more guys we were getting, I was like 'This is awesome, we're going to have some great offensive weapons.' Albert [Haynesworth] is a great defensive lineman. He's put up unbelievable numbers for an inside guy. He's a great football player."
ESPN Boston radio with Adam Jones can be heard Monday-Friday on ESPNBoston.com, from 12 p.m.-2 p.m.