Kraft: Title game party for sponsors

ByMike Reiss ESPN logo
Tuesday, January 27, 2015

PHOENIX -- New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft isn't about to start a war of words with Seattle Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman, who said Sunday that the Patriots wouldn't be disciplined by the NFL for underinflated footballs because of Kraft's close relationship with NFL commissioner Roger Goodell.

Sherman said the close ties between Kraft and Goodell were reflected in how they were posing for pictures at Kraft's home the night before the AFC Championship Game.

"I think Richard Sherman is a very smart marketing whiz," Kraft responded Tuesday at Super Bowl XLIX media day.

"If you go into the facts of what he said, the NFL always used to pay for a big party for the AFC Championship Game. We've been privileged to own the team for 21 years, and this was our 10th championship game. When the league stopped giving the parties, we started doing it. This is our third one."

Kraft explained the party at his home was for the Patriots' lead sponsors, which ultimately helps the NFL and the club grow revenues.

"I think Mr. Sherman understood that he's the biggest beneficiary, because they get over 50 percent of the revenues. So he didn't go to Harvard, but Stanford must be pretty good because he figured it out," Kraft said.

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