Playing his college ball at South Dakota State, Vinatieri began his pro career with the Amsterdam Admirals of the World League of American Football. The New England Patriots signed him after and in 1996, he was officially a National Football League player.
New England was a team on the rise and if we are to agree that New England has been the best team in the last 20 years, it was Vinatieri’s kick in the snow that began the dynasty. Against the Oakland Raiders in the playoffs, Vinatieri booted a 45 Yard Field Goal in a blizzard to send the game in Overtime, which he would win for them with a 23 Yard FG. The Patriots would then beat the St. Louis Rams in Super Bowl XXXVI, with Vinatieri again kicking the winning Field Goal, this time from 48 Yards out. He would go to two Pro Bowls and earn two First Team All-Pro Selections as a Patriot, and would also win two more Super Bowls.
Vinatieri signed with the Indianapolis Colts in 2006 and he would win his fourth Super Bowl in his debut season in the Hoosier State. He played for Indianapolis until 2019, and left the game as the all-time leader in Points (2,673) and Field Goals (599).