Raiders' Janikowski Ready for One More Training Camp

Former first-round Oakland pick, now 38, is headed into his 17th NFL season

His first head coach with the Raiders was Jon Gruden. Since then, he's played for nine others, including current boss Jack Del Rio. So, when kicker Sebastian Janikowski reports for duty at his 17th training camp late next week, he'll be a link to both the team's glory (its last Super Bowl appearance after the 2002 season) and ignominy (no trips to the postseason since).

But at age 38, Janikowski remains a vital part of the Raiders and a key piece on a franchise that hopes to finally get back to the playoffs in 2016.

He's played more games than any other Raider (252) and is the franchise's leading scorer by far (his 865 points eclipse the 626 of Tim Brown). His leg remains as strong as ever, as his 4-of-5 field goal tries from 2015 attest, and he's still better than most NFL kickers. In 2015 he was 21-of-26 on field goals and 38-of-39 on extra points. His 80.8 percent success rate on field goals was just a tick above his career rate of 80.2. Plus, the former first-round pick still booms his kickoffs through the end zone.

Janikowski is in the fourth year of a five-year deal that is set to pay him $3.96 million this year and $4.4 million in 2017. But as he gets ready to start training camp, he's not expected to lose his job to a much lower-priced free agent, Giorgio Tavecchio.

To his Raiders teammates, Janikowski is a fixture.

"He's the guy around here," fullback Marcel Reece told Don Banks of Sports Illustrated recently. "We treat him like he's one of one. An original. A living legend. He's been here so long he's like a statue in front of the building. But he's one of the greatest people I've met in football, and he's a warrior."

And Janikowski is eager to keep on kicking. He wants to be part of the team when it gets back into the postseason.

"I'm not even close to being done, the way I feel," he told Sports Illustrated. "I have always believed I have the potential to kick as long as I want to kick. I still feel good and I still love running out there on the field and being under pressure, hearing the fans. Whether they're booing you or screaming for you, I just love it."

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