Stephen Gostkowski missing an extra point for the first time since 2006 ended up costing the Patriots a chance at defending their Super Bowl title.
The Broncos held off the Patriots, 20-18, on Sunday to win the AFC Championship Game. New England was forced to go for a two-point conversion because their usually automatic kicker missed an extra point in the first quarter.
The NFL’s decision to move the extra points back to the 15-yard line before the season to make them less automatic played a key role in deciding the AFC champion. Gostkowski last missed an extra point in Week 17 of 2006.
"I feel terrible," told ESPN. "… It’s a nightmare scenario. That’s how I feel. I let a lot of people down."
At the time, the miss staked the Broncos to a 7-6 lead. Gostkowski made two field goals in the game, but the extra point will be one that’s hard to forget.
"It’s kind of a cruel reality that it came down to that," Gostkowski said. "… I just feel awful about it. It was my fault, 100 percent. I just didn’t hit a good kick."