Funny I became a real Pats fan about the same time you did - I think it was in 1976 - or within a year of then. A high school friend of mine invited me with her family to a Pats game. Yes, Steve Grogan was there. and I loved it. I was hooked.
Now granted since then I might not watch every game, but I keep up on it.
Flash ahead about 10 years later - I go to the Scooper Bowl. This is an annual event held in Boston to raise money for the Jimmy Fund. You pay around $10 and you get to eat all the ice cream you want - local ice cream companies donate ice cream for your tasting pleasure. Guess what local sports players are there - Steve Grogan and wouldn't you know Andre Tippett - I bought a Jimmy Fund hat and got their signatures on it. Grogan even poked fun at me because I had like three varies ice creams in my hand when I met him. Still remember that.
The first winning super bowl. I just remember after 9/11 - we were destined to win with the name Patriots! I was newly pregnant and we went to our neighbors where we watched the game. The women started chanting "cutie, cutie" whenever Brady was ready to pass and it seemed to work and then when Vinatieri would go for that field goal and us chicks were yelling "cutie, cutie" to Vinatieri - cuz he is cute; the men started chanting cutie, cutie --- the rest is history.