The New England Patriots enter Super Bowl LII as the defending world champions. Naturally, the team brings plenty of prior experience to the table especially when compared to a Philadelphia Eagles team that has only seven players on its roster that appeared on the sport's biggest stage before (two of which, Chris Long and LeGarrette Blount, former Patriots).
Let's break down New England's roster to find out who brings prior experience when it comes to preparing for and playing in the Super Bowl to the table:
QB Tom Brady
Five Super Bowl wins. Four Super Bowl MVP awards. And now another chance to add even more to his already legendary legacy as the greatest quarterback to ever grace the earth: Tom Brady will appear in his NFL record eighth Super Bowl next Sunday.
K Stephen Gostkowski
Brady and Gostkowski are the only two Patriots players to have appeared in more than three Super Bowls. New England’s kicker has lost his first two title game appearances before finally winning a ring in 2014 and another one last year.
WR Matthew Slater, OT Nate Solder, DT Alan Branch, LB James Harrison, SS Patrick Chung, FS Devin McCourty
Five Patriots have played in three Super Bowls before: While Slater, Solder, Chung and McCourty were on New England's roster for Super Bowls XLVI, XLIX and LI, James Harrison played in three title games with the Pittsburgh Steelers. A sixth player, defensive tackle Alan Branch, played in the last two Patriots title games and was also a member of the 2008 NFC Champion Arizona Cardinals (he was inactive for Super Bowl XLIII, though).
RB Brandon Bolden, FB James Develin, RB James White, WR Danny Amendola, TE Rob Gronkowski, OT Cameron Fleming, CB Malcolm Butler, FS Duron Harmon, P Ryan Allen
Of New England's 53-man roster, 16 players appeared in a Super Bowl more than once – nine of which two times (all with the Patriots in Super Bowls XLIX and LI). At least eight of the nine, depending on the injury status of LaAdrian Waddle and how it relates to Cameron Fleming, are expected to play prominent roles on the team next Sunday.
QB Brian Hoyer, RB Dion Lewis, WR Chris Hogan, OC David Andrews, OG Ted Karras, OG Shaq Mason, OG Joe Thuney, OT LaAdrian Waddle, DT Malcolm Brown, DT Ricky Jean Francois, DE Trey Flowers, DE Geneo Grissom, LB Elandon Roberts, LB Kyle Van Noy, SS Brandon King, SS Jordan Richards, CB Eric Rowe, LS Joe Cardona
A sizable portion of the Patriots' roster has played in or prepared for one Super Bowl before this year's. With the exception of Jean Francois, who was on the San Francisco 49ers' Super Bowl XLVII team, all have been reached the championship game with the Patriots – either last season or in Hoyer's case in 2011.
RB Rex Burkhead, RB Mike Gillislee, WR Kenny Britt, WR Brandin Cooks, WR Phillip Dorsett, WR Bernard Reedy, TE Dwayne Allen, TE Jacob Hollister, OT Cole Croston, DT Adam Butler, DT Lawrence Guy, DE Eric Lee, DE Deatrich Wise Jr., LB Marquis Flowers, LB Nicholas Grigsby, LB David Harris, CB Johnson Bademosi, CB Stephon Gilmore
While most of New England's active roster has Super Bowl experience, 18 players bring none to the table and are preparing for their first-ever title game. Among the group, naturally, are the team's four rookies as well as 14 veterans who were acquired by the team at some point after its Super Bowl LI victory.