With each subsequent Super Bowl title, the New England Patriots are in the envied, unique position of having to top themselves every time a new championship ring needs to be designed.
Granted, owner Robert Kraft has gotten plenty of practice coming up with flashy, innovative designs that both look good and tell a story about that particular season or historic franchise achievements. Nonetheless, jeweler Miran Armutlu of Minnesota’s Jostens relishes the challenge of coming up with a ring that will impress everybody. But the person he wants to impress the most is Patriots quarterback Tom Brady.
Follow the Heavy New England Patriots page for the latest breaking news, rumors and content!
“The best part of all of these for me, personally, is the emotional side,” Armutlu told The Athletic’s Jeff Howe. “Even after winning six of them, when Brady opened the box, he still said, ‘Oh my god, oh wow.’”
You can see Brady’s reaction for yourself in this video:
That beaming smile certainly says how awed Brady was by his newest Super Bowl jewelry. Armutlu had to feel mighty satisfied at the reaction to his work.
And it’s not like the master jeweler doesn’t have plenty of his own experience with championship rings. Not only has Armutlu designed all six of the Patriots’ championship rings, but he was also the creative mind behind the Boston Red Sox’s four most recent World Series rings, along with rings for the latest Celtics and Bruins titles.
Basically, Boston sports teams are keeping Armutlu and Jostens really busy. (However, Jostens is responsible for nearly all of the championship rings made for the four major sports in the United States.)
As Howe details in his piece, the process for designing the Super Bowl ring begins with Kraft and his son Jonathan, who take their ideas to Armutlu. But the theme has to be consistent: “Let’s make it bigger, let’s make it better.”
Can a championship ring be any bigger than the one just awarded to the Patriots for their sixth Super Bowl title in the Robert Kraft-Bill Belichick-Tom Brady era? Mere mortal fingers were surely not meant to withstand this kind of bling.
Kraft spares no expense for making a memorable keepsake for Patriots players, coaches, staffers and executives to wear on their fingers. Howe explains that the NFL pays for 150 rings, but Kraft ordered 231 and paid up for the additional expense. (That can equal up to $30,000 per ring.)
The goal is to create the best-looking ring possible, but telling a story is also important. For instance, including each of the franchise’s Lombardi Trophies (now up to six) is a consistent key to the design. Each player’s name and number is also on his respective ring, along with the Super Bowl LIII logo, the final score (13-3) from the game, and the 2018 season’s motto (“Still here”). This newest keepsake also included 20 sapphires representing each of the team’s AFC East titles.
Yet for the man designing that Super Bowl ring, the reward isn’t winning the championship but continually being able to impress the face of the Patriots’ Super Bowl Super Bowl dynasty. As long as Armutlu can make Tom Brady face light up when he opens that ring box, he knows his objective has been accomplished.