Patriots Chairman and CEO Robert Kraft and Head Coach Bill Belichick issued the following statements on the retirement of kicker Adam Vinatieri.
"Adam Vinatieri earned the respect of his teammates and Patriots fans everywhere in 1996 when he caught Herschel Walker from behind for a touchdown-saving tackle on a kickoff return. For the next 10 years, that respect and admiration grew with every clutch performance and game-winning kick, especially his iconic 48-yard field goal as time expired in Super Bowl XXXVI. For Patriots fans, the feeling of that first Super Bowl championship will never be replicated. As memorable as Adam's Super Bowl performances were, he will always be remembered in New England for the greatest field goal in NFL history – the game-tying 45-yarder in the Snow Bowl against the Raiders. He retires as the NFL's all-time leading scorer and I am certain will soon be celebrated as a Patriots and Pro Football Hall of Famer."
- Robert Kraft
"Adam Vinatieri is the greatest kicker of all-time who made the greatest kick of all-time in the 2001 divisional playoffs. His consistency, mental toughness and performance under pressure was legendary. I am honored to have coached Adam, going all the way back to his rookie year in 1996 and through some of the most special moments in Patriots and league history. Adam is in the rarest echelon of athletes whose career accomplishments may never be matched."
- Bill Belichick
Presenting our favorite photos of Patriots kicker Adam Vinatieri following his announcement he's retiring from pro football.