Should Oakland Raiders Worry About Sebastian Janikowski’s Struggles?

Oakland Raiders kicker Sebastian Janikowski's recent struggles have placed him in the crosshairs of the firing squad.

He deserves criticism for his miscues, but there’s premature buzz about his career headed straight for the toilet bowl.

When discussing Janikowski's latest mishaps, short-term memory comes into play among fans. This season, he’s logging a 76 percent field-goal percentage, and some spectators contributed to an uproar over his last misfire on Sunday.

On the contrary, Janikowski’s struggles have plagued him his entire career.


Janikowski Being Janikowski

As the table above illustrates, Janikowski failed to convert at least 80 percent of field-goal attempts in several seasons. He experienced a horrific stretch between the 2005-07 seasons, yet he survived to earn a four-year extension in 2010.

The man with the iron leg always had range but never exhibited pinpoint accuracy.

Janikowski isn’t losing his touch. This is who he’s always been throughout his career.

The rise in young talent around an older Janikowski (37 years old) leaves him behind, which causes most to say, “He’s losing his touch.” In reality, Janikowski’s current percentages aren’t significantly worse than his career numbers.


Inconsistent, Not Declining 

As a 16-year veteran, Janikowski continues to toe the line of inconsistency. Many will point to his age as a reason for his supposed decline, but it’s not exactly a downward slope—it closely resembles peaks and valleys.

In 2013, he converted only 70 percent of his field-goal attempts. At 35, you’d assume that’s a sign of decline. Nonetheless, he successfully converted 86 percent of his field-goal attempts in 2014.

This season could in...

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