The article seems to assume that Novell has many patents that cover things that are used in Linux. I fail to see where that assumption comes from.
Maybe Novell happens to have many old ones that happen to cover things used in Linux?? I've certainly not seen any uproar on Novell filing patents that would cover stuff used in Linux since Novell had bought SUSE. I would think that enough people were watching this that I would be surprised if a large number would exist.
Also I have seen Novell/SUSE contribute to GPL3 projects, which you would avoid if you had collected patents that you'd want to assert.