When Brandon King joined the New England Patriots as an undrafted free agent in 2015, he couldn’t have imagined he’d be where he is now. In his four years with New England, King has helped the Patriots reach four AFC Championship Games, three Super Bowls and has emerged as a reliable special teams player.
“Every day’s a dream come true to play in the NFL,” King, who signed a 2-year contract during the offseason, said. “Going to three Super Bowls, it’s crazy. It doesn’t feel like it’s real. You put a lot of work into it. It’s amazing to be able to see the outcome of the work you put in day in and day out pay off and be able to experience something like that.”
The 25-year-old can also be viewed as an experienced leader on a team that’s one win away from bringing home a sixth Vince Lombardi Trophy to New England. King, an Auburn product and Alabama native, will make his third Super Bowl appearance Sunday night when the Patriots take on the Los Angeles Rams.
“I feel fortunate to be around a group of guys that are unselfish and all want the same goal,” King said. “Everyone understands that when you go to work, every day you’re going to work. We approach every day like it’s a new day in itself. We focus and what we need to focus on. It’s great to be part of a team that takes winning serious. To be able to contribute in any way, it’s just great.”
While the Patriots carry plenty of impact players who’ll be making their first trip to the Super Bowl, King knows the ins and outs of what it’s like to prepare for it.
“It’s a different game but at the end of the day it’s the game of football,” King said. “We’ve been playing football all year. Everybody has a different way of approaching the game. I just enjoy the opportunity to play in it and be part of it. What I want most is to see the guys you work with day in and day out reach the ultimate goal.”
The Patriots are known for emphasizing the importance of special teams. Earlier this week, coach Bill Belichick spoke highly of Rams punter Johnny Hekker for his abilities to contribute with big plays in key moments. Sean Stellato, King’s agent, said it wouldn’t surprise him if special teams carry an impact in Sunday’s result.
“You see it every year in special teams,” Stellato said. “A huge blocked punt, you saw that in the Bears game (a 38-31 Patriots win in Week 7). That can change the momentum of the game huge.
“Coach Belichick stresses ‘do your job,'” Stellato continued. “If you look at the premium the Patriots put on special teams, they know what they have in Brandon. They’ve given him an opportunity to carve a niche. That’s their ability to find guys and put them in a position to be successful.”
King helped the Patriots reached their ultimate goal in Super Bowl 51 when they defeated the Atlanta Falcons, 34-28, in an overtime thriller. New England came up just short of repeating after last February’s 41-33 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles in Super Bowl 52.
“Last year it was nice to be in the game,” King said, “but you have to understand that the ultimate goal isn’t just to get there, it’s to win it.”
Some might say the loss to the Eagles has motivated the Patriots to ride a journey to redemption this season. King feels last year’s result is well in the past and doesn’t impact the team’s goal.
“I think anything motivates you to win,” King said. “Winning one motivates you to win. Losing motivates you to win because didn’t win. The motivation goes both ways. Everything’s within itself.”