Stephen Gostkowski named AFC Special Teams Player of the Week

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- New England Patriots kicker Stephen Gostkowski was named AFC Special Teams Player of the Week after going 4-for-4 on field goal attempts in Sunday's win over the Raiders, which included a career-long 62-yarder at the end of the second quarter.

Gostkowski also hit from 51, 40 and 29 yards in the high altitude at Estadio Azteca in Mexico, while adding three extra points as well.

It marked the third time in Gostkowski's career that he has kicked two field goals of at least 50 yards in the same game. He had a 51-yarder and a 53-yarder against Arizona (Sept. 16, 2012) and had two 53-yarders at Houston (Dec. 1, 2013). It is also the 14th time in his career he has made four or more field goals in a single game.

The work of Gostkowski, now in his 12th NFL season, came up during Bill Belichick's news conference Wednesday morning. Belichick called the 62-yarder a "helluva kick" while noting the entire operation of long-snapper Joe Cardona and holder Ryan Allen.

Also, Belichick was asked what he looks for with a player of Gostkowski's experience to gauge improvement or if the player is still performing at a high enough level.

"I don’t know how much real improvement you’re going to see from a player that’s been in the league 12 or 20 years in a case like Adam [Vinatieri] or somebody like that. But, if the level they’re performing at is pretty good, if they can maintain that, then that’s certainly enough to help the team," he answered. "Are there things that a player can do better? Yeah, sure, there always are technique things. I think Steve has really improved in some of his alternative kicks on kickoffs, as an example, instead of just kicking every ball as far as he can. He’s done a great job of that. I’d say it’s maintaining the timing and the overall leg speed and technique that makes kickers good at their job."