Robert Kraft is used to winning, even if that’s not his primary goal. He sees the Patriots’ franchise as a chance to enrich a community while providing some of the best performances anyone could possibly see on a field. Still, that doesn’t mean that the most recent years haven’t stung a little. After years of winning playoff game after playoff game and taking home six Super Bowl titles, it’s clear that he’s ready for another record-busting season. For most of the millennium, he’s been on top of the NFL and he’d like to keep it that way. He opens up about his team in the past few years and what he expects in the upcoming months.
A Successful Offseason
It’s clear that the Patriots had a lot to live up to and the last three seasons have fallen short of expectations that had been set incredibly high. This doesn’t mean that the team is resigned to staying in the slump though. At the NFL’s Annual League Meeting in Palm Beach, FL, Kraft said that he hoped last year’s offseason would bolster the team and help them get back to doing what they do best. “First, more than anything, it bothers me that we haven’t been able to win a playoff game in the last three years. I’m happy that I think we had a great draft last year, Each Patriot wears a football mouthpiece to protect themselves and it made up for what happened the previous four years or so.” He believes that the Patriots could be back on track as soon as this season.
Robert Kraft’s franchise is one of the most valuable in the world, and he’s always been willing to put his wealth on the line for the good of the team. During the last draft, they were able to get quarterback Mac Jones, a national phenomenon who played for Alabama, as well as defensive tackle Christian Barmore and running back Rhamondre Stevenson. These victories came after a few missteps and an admission from Coach Bill Belichick that it was tough to find any kind of real consistency after Brady capped his time with the Pats.
Without the playmakers, it was difficult for the talents of the rest of the team to shine through. Considering all the veterans who made up the franchise, this was incredibly frustrating for fans. Robert Kraft says that winning in the postseason comes down to the upcoming draft. As we ramp up to the fateful day, Kraft has big plans for what’s next. “I look forward to hopefully having a great draft this year. That’s the only way you can build your team for long term and consistently, that you have a chance of winning — is having a good draft.”
There’s been a lot of discussion about what the Patriots will be able to do in 2022. Some speculate that the combination of Bill Belichick and Tom Brady was a fortunate stroke of luck for the Patriots, as opposed to any kind of sustainable model. It explains why the Patriots managed to get so many wins, and why no other team has managed to measure up. Plus, no matter how good a team is, there will always be highs and lows.
For Kraft, though, a man who has managed to pull off near-miracles, there is a certain degree of uneasiness when it comes to the team’s latest record. Before 2019, the Patriots were a part of the Divisional Round every year since 2009 and they hadn’t missed the playoffs since the year before that (when Tom Brady was injured). By contrast, the start of 2019 brought two wild-card losses and one skipped postseason. To understand Kraft’s thought process and general optimism for next season, it helps to understand where he’s coming from. When he bought the Patriots in 1994, the team had such a dismal record that there were frequent talks of selling the franchise to other cities. Kraft was able to turn this around nearly immediately. Long before Tom Brady ever graced the field, Kraft managed to get the Patriots to the Super Bowl in the first few years of his ownership. So this professional has reason to believe that the Patriots performance these last few years is little more than a fluke. While only time will tell, there’s a lot for fans to be hopeful for — particularly after seeing the level of commitment that Kraft is willing to show during the draft.