Atlanta — Whenever he’s ready to hang up his cleats, Patriots kicker Stephen Gostkowski’s list of milestones should start with one word: consistency.
Only two players on the Patriots’ 2018 roster — Gostkowski and Tom Brady — were around for each of their previous five Super Bowl appearances.
While the 41-year-old quarterback stays in the spotlight Gostkowski, who has spent his entire 13-year career with the Patriots and just celebrated his 35th birthday, has quietly been one of the franchise’s most consistent contributors since replacing Adam Vinatieri.
While Vinatieri’s legend still resonates in New England, Gostkowski will tie Mike Lodish for the second-most Super Bowls played with his sixth appearance on Sunday, behind only Brady’s nine.
It’s a run that Gostkowski himself has trouble fully grasping.
“It’s surreal. You have to pinch yourself sometimes,” Gostkowski said. “But you can’t get too caught up in it because we have a game on Sunday. The more I think about the game and how I’m going to perform and do my job the better I will be.”
Gostkowski has long passed Vinatieri to become the franchise’s all-time scoring leader (1,743 points) and is second behind him in career postseason points (198). This season he also became the 19th kicker in NFL history to reach 350 field goals.
Three to extend streak
Don Crisman knows precisely when the streak began: Jan. 15, 1967. The ticket price for the Super Bowl at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum was $12.
“Good seats,” Crisman, 82, said. “You could buy $6 tickets, and $10. There were three prices.”
On Sunday, Crisman, Gregory Eaton and Tom Henschel will attend Super Bowl LIII. They’re the last surviving members of the Never Miss a Super Bowl Club, the only known fans with a perfect attendance record for the NFL’s biggest game.
“I’ve missed weddings, I’ve missed funerals, but I’ve never missed a Super Bowl,” said Eaton, 79, from Lansing. “Anyone in my family knows don’t plan anything because I’m gone that week.”
Having to stretch limos
Limousine companies are blaming the state of Georgia for leaving them 300-400 vehicles short of what’s needed to transport NFL owners, corporate clients and Very Important People this Super Bowl weekend. State law bars out-of-state limousines that aren’t insured and registered in Georgia.