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    How Old Is Robert Kraft? Patriots Owner’s Long Path With New England

    Robert Kraft purchased the New England Patriots in 1994, and since then, they have been the most successful franchise in the NFL.

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    Now 82 years of age, Robert Kraft’s incredible run as owner of the New England Patriots began in 1994 — when the billionaire purchased the team for $172 million.

    Kraft’s Patriots are worth well over six billion dollars today and — despite Tom Brady and Bill Belichick departing the franchise — New England — with six Super Bowl championships tied to their name — remains one of the more accomplished teams in North American sports.

    Robert Kraft’s Rise to Glory in New England

    Before Kraft took over as the lead owner of the Patriots, James Orthwein handled those duties in 1992.

    After unsuccessfully attempting to move the franchise to his home city of St. Louis, Orthwein sold the Patriots to Kraft two seasons later.

    Kraft said that his “passion” for the Patriots led him to “break every one of my financial rules” in his purchasing of the franchise.

    Before Kraft took over, the Patriots did not have much success, finishing a combined 14-50 from 1990-93, including a miserable 1-15 campaign in 1990.

    In Kraft’s inaugural season as owner, the Patriots sold out their entire 1994 season, including preseason games.

    To this date, every Patriots preseason, regular season, and postseason game has been sold out.

    Kraft’s first big decision came on Jan. 27, 2000, when Kraft traded New England’s first-round draft pick to the New York Jets in what would give Kraft immediate rights to hire one of — if not the — all-time decorated head coaches in the history of the sport: now-former Patriots’ Bill Belichick.

    At the time, it may have been viewed as a questionable hire, but Belichick would guide the Patriots to six Super Bowl championships, tied with the Pittsburgh Steelers for the most in NFL history.

    That same calendar year in April’s draft, Kraft drafted QB Tom Brady No. 199 overall in the sixth round — pairing Brady and Belichick to shape a dynasty that lasted for approximately two decades.

    Kraft’s Patriots Were an NFL Dynasty

    Under Kraft’s ownership, appearing in a Super Bowl almost seemed to be a yearly accolade for the Patriots — winning in 2001, 2003, 2004, 2014, 2016, and 2018.

    After having never won more than 11 games before Kraft’s arrival, the Patriots have won 12 games at least 14 times — most notably during their 2007 undefeated run before losing in the Super Bowl to Eli Manning’s New York Giants.

    Kraft and Brady shared the field one last time in a meaningful football game during the opening round of the 2019 postseason vs. the Tennessee Titans.

    With the Patriots trailing, 14-13 and pinned back on its 1-yard line with 15 seconds remaining in the game, Brady’s final pass attempt of the game — and last as a Patriot — was intercepted and returned for a touchdown by Titans cornerback and former teammate Logan Ryan.

    It felt as if the dynasty was dwindling — and it was.

    One day before his contract was set to expire in March of 2020, Brady announced to Kraft he would not be re-signing with the team, officially ending his 20-year tenure in New England.

    In May of 2023, Kraft, in an appearance on NFL Network’s “Good Morning Football,” told viewers that the organization would officially honor Brady with a special homecoming appearance during New England’s Week 1 game of the 2023 season.

    MORE: A Look at Kraft’s Massive House 

    Kraft also stated that “it will be the beginning of many celebrations to honor [Brady] and say thank you for what he did for us in 20 years playing for the [Patriots].”

    “In my mind, he (Robert Kraft) does the job. He doesn’t pass the job off to someone else. He takes the job very seriously and does a great job managing the whole organization,” Brady said of Kraft.

    Belichick remained on New England’s sideline up until this past season, as Kraft and Belichick mutually agreed to go in different directions after back-to-back losing seasons — setting up a new era of Patriots football under Kraft beginning in 2024.

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