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Stephen Gostkowski says he 'lost the game' for Patriots, but his teammates disagree

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Gostkowski's missed extra point proved costly, but his teammates say he's not the one to blame even if he thinks so.

Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

A two-point conversion attempt for the New England Patriots that could have forced overtime was instead tipped and intercepted to seal the Denver Broncos' 20-18 win and send them to the Super Bowl. But if it wasn't for a rare miss from Stephen Gostkowski on an extra point attempt after a first-quarter touchdown, the Patriots would've just needed another successful kick to tie.

"I just feel terrible," Gostkowski said. "All day, these guys put their bodies and lives on the line and for me to come out here and miss a kick, it's a nightmare scenario. I can't even explain how I feel right now. It's just a complete shock and I let a lot of people down. It's not a good feeling."

Prior to Gostkowski's miss, he was a perfect 60-of-60 on extra point tries in his postseason career and hadn't missed one in the regular season since Week 17 of his rookie year in 2006. Earlier in the year, he set the record for consecutive successful extra point tries even after the NFL increased their difficulty by pushing them from 19-yard chip shots into 32-yard attempts.

After the game, Gostkowski said repeatedly that he let people down and said that his miss was the reason for the loss.

"You don't want to be the reason you lose," Gostkowski said. "It's not a good feeling. I deserve all the blame that I get and I'll try to hold my head up high. I'm not going to make an excuse, I should have done better."

But as Gostkowski tried to take the blame, his Patriots teammates came to his defense. Cornerback Logan Ryan called him "the best kicker in the league" and Tom Brady, Rob Gronkowski, Danny Amendola and Malcolm Butler all had similar messages.

"One play doesn't define a game," Patriots wide receiver Julian Edelman said after the game. "There were plenty of opportunities for us to overcome that, and Steve nailed two field goals to keep us in it. It's never just one play. Steve is a stud. We love him to death. No chance it is on him."

Gostkowski made field goals of 46 and 38 yards in the game, improving him to 24-of-26 on career field goal attempts in the playoffs. He finished 2015 with First-Team All-Pro honors for the second time in his career after making 33-of-36 field goal tries in the regular season and successfully converting all 52 extra point tries.

His six points on Sunday moved him into a tie with Jerry Rice for fourth all-time in postseason scoring, although he needs another 103 to pass Adam Vinatieri for the playoff record.