The end of the line has come for the longest tenured NFL player from a state of Florida school, as Seahawks and former Raiders legendary kicker, Sebastian Janikowski, has decided to “hang them up.”
Janikowski told ESPN’s Adam Schefter Sunday that his 19th season spent last year in the Pacific Northwest will be his last:
Sebastian Janikowski told ESPN that, after 19 seasons, he is retiring from NFL at the age of 41: “It was a good run. I still think of the Super Bowl – it still hurts.” He plans to turn into a cab driver, taking his 3 girls to school. Seabass made more $ than any K in NFL history.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) April 28, 2019
At 41 years of age Janikowski was a long-shot to continue playing this season anyway, especially as he has battled back problems at the end of his career. It was that back issue that caused the Raiders to not only put him on injured reserve before he ever kicked in a game in 2017, but then, release him out of concern for the injury last offseason.
As we wrote then, the former All-American kicker and first-round pick out of Florida State was contemplating retirement when he hooked on with Seattle. Janikowski ended up making 22 – 27 of his field goals including 12 of 13 from Beyond 40 yards in 2018.
Janikowski was controversially drafted in the first round by the late Oakland owner/GM Al Davis in 2000. And, during an erratic rookie season where he was a shaky 22-32 in field goal attempts, former and now once again Raiders coach Jon Gruden, admitted that he wanted Janikowski benched or released that year. Still, after the rocky start, he ended up making 80% of his field goals (414-515) all time in his Raiders tenure.
Janikowski will retire holding the NFL record, and maybe forever, with an astounding 58 field goals of 50 yards + in his career. He was in his prime regarded regarded as the standard of long distance field goal kickers in pro football throughout the 2000’s. Yet, amazingly Janikowski only made one Pro Bowl, in 2011.
His career launched at Florida State in 1997-99, where Janikowski won the Lou Groza Award as the nation’s top kicker in each of his last two seasons making 50-62 field goal attempts with the Seminoles. Janikowski also kicked for FSU in their 2000 BCS Title Game win over Michael Vick and Virginia Tech.
With this the end of his career, Janikowski retires as the oldest player from a Florida college that was still playing last year. And, now, the only other remaining active member of the 2000 NFL Draft class is…. (you guessed it), Tom Brady of the Patriots.
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