Bill Belichick, Julian Edelman back Stephen Gostkowski despite costly miss

‘He’s the best’

Stephen Gostkowski wasn’t pleased with his performance in the AFC Championship Game.
Stephen Gostkowski wasn’t pleased with his performance in the AFC Championship Game. –Charles Krupa/AP

No Patriots player or coach is blaming the AFC championship loss on Stephen Gostkowski — except Stephen Gostkowski. The Patriots kicker said he felt he lost the game for the Patriots in their 20-18 defeat against the Broncos.

“I think we all feel that way — I feel like it’s my fault,’’ Bill Belichick said Monday when asked about Gostkowski’s comments. “I’m sure all the other players who played feel like it’s their fault.’’

He added: “Steve’s a great kicker. He had a great year for us, and as I said at the beginning, I think every player and coach who participated in the game wishes there were a couple of things they would’ve done differently. I feel that way. Everybody I’ve talked to feels that way. I can’t imagine anybody who participated in the game doesn’t feel that way.’’

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Patriots players expressed similar sentiments following the game, where Gostkowski’s missed extra point could have increased the Patriots’ chances of a comeback. But the miss came in the first quarter with almost 47 minutes remaining in the game. The 31-year-old kicker also went 2 of 2 on field goals during the game.

“He’s a great player,’’ Tom Brady said Sunday in his postgame press conference. “He’s the best. Everyone misses them at some point. There was plenty of football left.’’

Gostkowski had not missed a kick since his rookie season in 2006 — back when Brady was dating Bridget Moynahan. Including regular season and postseason, Gostkowski is 562 of 563 on his career.

“We love him to death,’’ Julian Edelman said. “There’s no chance it’s on him, no way.’’

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