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Rob Ninkovich: Prototypical Patriot

Defensive captain embodies hardworking, team-first attitude in New England

Originally Published: January 17, 2014
By Greg Garber | ESPN.com

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- Tom Brady slid quietly into a small room off the visiting locker room Thursday morning at Gillette Stadium.

A day earlier, when a case of the flu sent the New England Patriots' star quarterback home from the facility and forced him to miss practice, mass hysteria ensued. Headlines shrieked the news, and there was rampant speculation that he might not be 100 percent against the Denver Broncos' defense in Sunday's AFC Championship Game.

Forty minutes later, wearing ...

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