Patriots DE Ninkovich producing in new position

Patriots DE Ninkovich producing in new position
October 11, 2012, 5:42 pm
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Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning (18) is sacked by New England Patriots linebacker Jerod Mayo, bottom, as defensive end Rob Ninkovich wraps Manning up in the first quarter of an NFL football game, Sunday, Oct. 7, 2012, in Foxborough, Mass. (AP Photo/Stephan Savoia)


FOXBOROUGH, Mass. (AP) Patriots defensive end Rob Ninkovich is preparing to face the Seattle Seahawks after making some big plays against the Denver Broncos.

Ninkovich forced fumbles by Peyton Manning and Willis McGahee in last Sunday's 31-21 win by New England. After a slow start, he's making major contributions following his off-season shift from linebacker.

He'll have a much different challenge on Sunday in Seattle. Instead of facing the 36-year-old, 6-foot-5 Manning, he'll try to sack a more mobile quarterback, 23-year-old, 5-foot-11 rookie Russell Wilson.

Ninkovich said the keys to stopping Wilson are collapsing the pocket so he can't escape the rush.

He said his responsibilities are simpler this season at defensive end. He rarely has to worry about covering receivers. His job is to beat his blocker and tackle the ball carrier.