Stephen Gostkowski: Taking my time made me realize I 100 percent wanted to stay with Patriots

Ryan Hannable
April 15, 2019 - 10:03 am

It took a long time for Patriots kicker Stephen Gostkowski to re-sign with the Patriots this offseason. The 35-year-old was a free agent after last season, but only re-upped with the team last week on a two-year deal.

Speaking with ESPN's Mike Reiss, Gostkowski explained his thought process, including admitting taking the extra time made him 100 percent realize staying in New England was what he wanted.

"I'm extremely grateful and excited for the opportunity to keep playing, especially for this team," he said. "Having had to wait 13 years to be a free agent kind of put a different spin on things for me, because I'm in a whole different place in my life and career than a lot of people when they first have a shot at free agency. The things I had to think about and go through, and decisions I had to make of whether I would stay or leave, are completely different from what I would have had 10 years ago when I could have had a chance at free agency.

"But having the extra time, and waiting and taking my time, really made me know that I was 100 percent wanting to be here. I'm so blessed to have a chance to play 15 years in one spot. I know my position is different than most. But even in my position, guys that have played it this long, have probably already been with two or three different teams. We love it here. My family loves it here. It would have been a lot to leave.

"You have to make decisions based on a multitude of factors, and every time I thought of what it would be like somewhere else, I always came back to how much I love it here. It's a weird business, and you have to explore every option, but it was really tough for me to think I was ever going to leave. I'm excited it worked out and just thankful for another opportunity to have a crack at playing for the Patriots."

Gostkowski connected on 27-of-32 field goal last year, but was perfect inside of 40 yards. The veteran has missed some big kicks in the postseason in recent years, but overall is still one of the best kickers in the NFL.

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