After losing Shane Lechler in the off-season, the Oakland Raiders weren’t about to let their star kicker go, too.
The team locked Sebastian Janikowski up for another five years with a $19 million contract, making him the highest paid kicker in the league (he already had one year left on his contract, so the four year extension gives them five years with him).
Jano has $8 million guaranteed over the next two seasons and will be making $5.3 million this season alone.
This just goes to show how much confidence the team has in him -- and why wouldn’t they -- since Reggie McKenzie is doling out a lot of short term contracts right now, in an effort to rebuild.
Last season, Janikowski was 31-34, only missing field goals from 51, 61, and 64 yards.
He’s also tied the longest field goal record of 63 yards, and cemented his second top three spot by nailing a 61 yarder.
Janikowski gives the Raiders a ton of flexibility because when other teams wouldn’t even consider trying a field goal, the team knows there’s a least a chance that Jano will boot it in, and even then some occasionally.
After the negotiations were done, the kicker said:
"Where else would I go? I love California, I love being here and I see the changes. I think we're moving in the right direction. People are going to be surprised this year what we can do. That was the goal. I love it being here [with the Raiders] and I want to finish here. When [general manager Reggie McKenzie] came in, they called me in the offseason and they said they wanted to get something done. I'm glad it's done. It's job security. It's not in the back of your head about what they're going to do because of what happened with Shane. I can just worry about kicking and winning some games."
I think all Raiders fans can agree that we’re glad to have this one constant on the team for another five years too.
Who knows what kind of records he can break in that time!