ATLANTA – Patriots owner Robert Kraft was at a meeting of league owners today trying to make sure there’s a season to be played in the fall.
But from the look on his face, it wasn’t hard to see that Kraft still had his mind on the one that ended abruptly with a 28-21 loss to the Jets in the playoffs.
“I think Tommy (Brady) said it best: we’ve got this empty feeling because it went so fast,” Kraft said after the meeting concluded at the Gateway Marriott. “This team, I developed a real affection for. I think if anyone had said at the beginning of the year that we’d go 14-2 and get a bye, I don’t there would have been any takers. To see the way it evolved and everyone put the team first, the coaching staff did a great job and we really got excited with this team and then it got yanked away from us. So great credit goes to the Jets and Rex Ryan and what they did. They earned it.”
As to whether he was surprised the Patriots’ offense – which had performed at such a high level during the eight-game winning streak – struggled against the Jets, Kraft said, “The Jets just did a great job, so kudos to them.”
At the same time, Kraft expressed hope for the future of the Patriots – whenever the next season is played.
“The nice thing is we have a tremendous base to build on this year,” he said. “We didn’t have as good a base last year to build on. We had a lot more things we had to do. I’m excited about this team and I look forward to some fun years in the next few years.”
Kraft, who was at the meeting with son and team president Jonathan Kraft, expressed a little disappointment with some of the trash talking that went on between the Jets and Patriots in the build-up to the game.
“I don’t think that’s our style but I guess it happens from time to time,” Kraft said.