New England Patriots' owner Robert Kraft credits a large part of his champion team's success to one thing that, he says, works in sports and in business.
In a CNBC interview this week, Kraft said he was grateful for the consistent presence of longtime star quarterback Tom Brady and head coach Bill Belichick. "We've been privileged to keep continuity with two people who are unbelievable at what they do."
"Even when you are running a business, keeping continuity and having people keep their egos under control" is key, Kraft told "Squawk Box." "It's almost two decades we've been able to keep this thing running together."
The Patriots, with the most Super Bowl appearances at 10, are going for their sixth championship win when they play the Los Angeles Rams on Sunday. It's the third year in a row that New England is going to the big game. A win Sunday would tie the Pittsburgh Steelers for the most Super Bowl wins ever. Currently, the Patriots are tied at five wins with the Dallas Cowboys and the San Francisco 49ers.
Kraft said the team's brand — and that of the National Football League — is something people can feel good about. "In the world we are living in people are looking to connect."
Before the Patriots left home, they got a rousing send off from their fans. About 35,000 people came to Gillette Stadium stadium — about 29 miles from downtown Boston and 25 miles from downtown Providence, Rhode Island — this past Sunday to bid the team good luck.
"They started lining up at 2:30 in the morning. They saw the players and coaches for 20 minutes at 11:00. There was such good karma and good feeling," said Kraft, the founder, chairman, and CEO of the Kraft Group. The company not only owns the Patriots and Gillette Stadium but a number of other businesses as well.
But that's in New England. The rest of the country doesn't appear to feel the same way about the Patriots. Once an underdog many years ago, they're now a dynasty with repeat Super Bowl performances. In a recent SB Nation's FanPulse poll, 75 percent of football fans said they wanted the Rams to win, while 25 percent were rooting for the Patriots. The Ram's hometown paper, the Los Angeles Times, called the Patriots "football's perfect villain — cheating, haughty, hated."
Kraft takes it all in stride. "Seventeen years ago on Super Bowl Sunday, Feb 3, we were the biggest underdog in the history of the Super Bowl and all of America was in our corner," he explained. "We've had a pretty good run and we understand everyone wants a turn at it."