Raiders mailbag: What happened to Sebastian Janikowski?

Updated August 9, 2018 - 10:06 pm

Jerry once asked George if he’s confident in getting the “I love you” return from his girlfriend.

“If you don’t get that return, that’s a pretty big matzo ball hanging out there,” Jerry said in the “Seinfeld” scene.

George never got that return.

Today, we’re faced with the possibility of leaving matzo balls hanging on a daily basis.

Ever ask a question on a group text only to be ignored?

It’s an embarrassing feeling. You consider making new friends because it’s been 10 minutes and no one has acknowledged your “Mimosas Sunday?” text that was sent at 2 p.m. on a Tuesday.

We’ve all been there. This new technology is rough on the social life confidence.

I put myself out there last week when I asked Raider Nation on Twitter to send me questions to kick off the Review-Journal’s first Raiders mailbag.

For nearly 24 hours, the silver and black faithful left me on read.

Then Bay Area native Carlo Ammatuna rescued me from my lonely island with a thoughtful email.

Ammatuna mentioned how he developed a strong fandom for the Raiders at the age of 8 when the team returned to Oakland in 1995 after leaving Los Angeles.

He plans on continuing to cheer for the Raiders when they move to Las Vegas in 2020.

“No other football team could win me over and no other sports team could capture my attention quite in the same way that Al Davis’ Raiders could,” Ammatuna’s email read. “I’d put up with the losing, with a few negative experiences at the Coliseum and with the ever present rumors of leaving Oakland.

“Even through the talks of moving to Santa Clara, Carson and San Antonio, none of that mattered (as long) as the Raiders moved to the best option that would better the team and secure the greatness they always strived for.”

Raiders fans in Northern California can relate to Ammatuna. They’ll eventually have to decide, if they haven’t already, if the Raiders will remain their favorite team when the moving trucks arrive.

There’s no right or wrong decision, but keep in mind, the Raiders won’t forget where they come from. The Raiders make their history a priority, and that’s evident in how well they treat their alumni players.

The location of the new home stadium will be nearly 600 miles away, but the team mantra and national aura should remain the same.

If you’re on the fence, wait until the Raiders play the Rams at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum next week for a preseason game. The former home of the Raiders will probably be covered in black.

The Raiders left L.A. 24 years ago and still remain the city’s favorite NFL team, even with the Rams and Chargers recently moving into town.

It’s hard to give up on the Raiders.

New faces on special teams

The second email I received was a lot shorter and didn’t have a name, just a phone number with a 702 area code.

So we at least know he’s local, and he might have been stuck in a time machine.

“What is the latest information on Oakland kicker (Sebastian) Janikowski?” 702 local asked. “Still on the team? Traded? Retired? Other info?”

I hate to break the bad news, 702 local. Janikowski is now kicking for the Seahawks after the Raiders parted ways with the franchise’s all-time leading scorer in the spring.

Janikowski’s 18-year run with the Raiders was recently put into perspective.

Giorgio Tavecchio was the starting kicker for the Raiders in 2017. He’s no longer on the team after being cut last week.

Rookie Eddy Pineiro and veteran Mike Nugent are vying for the starting gig in 2018.

Special teams was once an area of stability for the Raiders when Janikowski and punter Shane Lechler were doing the kicking.

The Raiders drafted Janikowski in the first round and selected Lechler in the fifth round of the 2000 draft. The two were paired together for 13 seasons.

The Raiders potentially could have a rookie kicker-punter tandem again this season with Pineiro and punter Johnny Townsend.

“We kind of compare our game a lot to those guys, Janikowski and Lechler,” Townsend said Wednesday. “They’re two of the best to ever to do it, especially to wear the Raider brand. We try to model our game after them.”

Good or bad trade?

Miguel Zavala tweeted “Bad trade. What about (Seth) Roberts?”

He was referring to the draft day trade the Raiders executed in April to land wide receiver Martavis Bryant after giving up a third-round pick to the Steelers.

Bryant’s struggles to grasp Raiders coach Jon Gruden’s offense have been made public this training camp.

He also hasn’t received many snaps with the first-team offense.

That could change after Bryant made dazzling plays with Connor Cook throwing him passes Wednesday in a joint practice against the Lions, whom the Raiders face Friday in the preseason opener.

Roberts doesn’t seem like the candidate to take Bryant’s snaps if he can’t leave Gruden’s doghouse before the regular season arrives.

The Raiders have been impressed with Ryan Switzer, who also joined the Raiders this spring on a draft day trade.

At first, it seemed Switzer was going to be solely a return specialist. He can now be the starting slot receiver.

It’s too soon to grade the Bryant trade, but the Raiders might have insurance with their other trade.

Contact Gilbert Manzano at gmanzano@reviewjournal.com. Follow @GManzano24 on Twitter.

ad-high_impact_4
Raiders Videos
Vegas Nation Mailbag 10-16-2018
Elaine Wilson and Gilbert Manzano discuss The Raiders 27-3 loss to the Seahawks in London as The Raiders enter their bye week.
Vegas Nation: Raiders Fall To Seahawks; Cooper Out With Concussion
Raiders beat writer Michael Gehlken, Sports Columnist Ed Graney and sports writer Gilbert Manzano go over the Raiders loss to the Seattle Seahawks in London.
Derek Carr says the team will focus on improving – Heidi Fang
Oakland Raiders quarterback Derek Carr says the team will do what's necessary to improve following its 27-3 loss in London to the Seattle Seahawks.
Gruden on the Raiders loss to the Seahawks, Cooper's injury – Heidi Fang
Oakland Raiders head coach Jon Gruden talks to media following the team's 27-3 loss to the Seattle Seahawks in London, England.
A look at NFL sports betting in London
With the NFL introducing England to different teams each year since 2007, Review-Journal columnist Ed Graney asked fans in London ahead of the Oakland Raiders vs. Seattle Seahawks how often they flock to them to place wagers on American football.
Would the NFL be accepted abroad?
Review-Journal columnist Ed Graney takes to the streets of London, England, ahead of the Oakland Raiders facing the Seattle Seahawks to find out if the NFL is accepted, if the game is understood and what its fan base is like outside of the United States.
Vegas Nation: Gruden Recaps Loss to LA Chargers
Raiders beat reporter Michael Gehlken reports from Alameda, Calif. as the team looks ahead to London following a loss to the Los Angeles Chargers.
Vegas Nation: Raiders Fall To 1-4 This Season
Raiders beat writer Michael Gehlken goes over the Raiders loss to the Chargers.
Raiders coordinators rave about Lynch's running style
Raiders offensive coordinator Greg Olson and defensive coordinator Paul Guenther talk about Marshawn Lynch's style of running, and what he means to the team.
Vegas Nation: Raiders Defense Looks to Prevent Big Plays
Raiders beat reporter Michael Gehlken talks about the team's renewed focus on preventing big plays from the other team's offense, as the Raiders go into Los Angeles allowing the 27th most yards per game.
Vegas Nation Mailbag: Week 5
Elaine Wilson and Gilbert Manzano answer all your burning Raiders questions leading up to their week 5 match up with Chargers.
Vegas Nation: Raiders O-Line Battling Injuries
Raiders beat reporter Michael Gehlken talks about Donald Penn being moved to the Raiders' injured reserve list, as well as other injuries on the team's offensive line.
Vegas Nation: Raiders Look Ahead to Rival L.A. Chargers
Raiders beat reporter Michael Gehlken recaps the controversial calls in Sunday's victory over the Cleveland Browns, the effect Donald Penn's injury could bring, and the reinstatement of cornerback Daryl Worley.
Vegas Nation: Raiders Win Close Game Against Browns In OT
Raiders beat writer Michael Gehlken, sports columnist Ed Graney and sports writer Gilbert Manzano goes over the Raiders overtime win against the Cleveland Browns.
Vegas Nation: McCrane, rookie specialists practice at Coliseum on Friday
Raiders beat reporter Michael Gehlken talks about how the team's rookie kicker, holder and long snapper are preparing for kicking off the Coliseum dirt. Gehlken also provides an injury update ahead of the Raiders' Week 4 game against the Cleveland Browns.
Vegas Nation: Paul Guenther Speaks on New Rules
Bryan Salmond is in studio as beat writer Michael Gehlken reports from Alameda where Paul Guenther spoke out about the new roghing the passer rules on the NFL.
Raiders Stadium Construction - Sept. 27, 2018
Raiders Stadium construction video on September 27th, 2018. (Nathan Asselin/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Vegas Nation: Derek Carr Speaks on Hayes Torn ACL
Host Bryan Salmond and Raiders beat-writer Michael Gehlken cover William Hayes's torn ACL from Sundays game, in which he suffered from trying not to land on Derek Carr.
Vegas Nation Mailbag: Week 4
Vegas Nation host Bryan Salmond and Review-Journal sports writer Gilbert Manzano answer your burning questions about the Raiders and Jon Gruden.
Gruden, Carr critical of new roughing the passer rules
Raiders head coach Jon Gruden wants more clarity on new roughing the passer rules, while Carr reacts to Dolphins William Hayes' injury.
Vegas Nation: Raiders Prepare for the Browns
Host Bryan Salmond discusses the Raiders and Browns seasons so far before Sundays game.
Raiders Adopt Student Resource Room At Robert Taylor Elementary School In Henderson
Former Raiders player Leo Gray and Robert Taylor Elementary School principal Kim Basham talk about the new resource room at the school on Sept. 25, 2018 in Henderson, Nevada. (Ron Kantowski/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Vegas Nation: Nugent Suffers Injury in Miami
Raiders reporter Michael Gehlken talks about Mike Nugent's injury in Miami and the Raiders poor turnover differential through the team's first three games.
Vegas Nation: Raiders Drop to 0-3 with Loss to the Dolphins
Bryan Salmond and Gilbert Manzano are in studio while Michael Gehlken and Ed Graney report from Miami on the Raiders loss to the Miami Dolphins.
More information on design of Raiders' practice facility in Henderson
Officials plan to finish the Raiders' Henderson headquarters by spring 2020. The planned facility would be home to offices, training facilities and 4 1/2 football fields.
Vegas Nation: Raiders fall short in Week 1 to the Rams
Bryan Salmond and Gilbert Manzano are in studio recapping the first game of 2018 for the Oakland Raiders. Michael Gehlken and Ed Graney report from Oakland.
Raiders BBQ
On Friday, July 20, Oakland Raiders head coach Jon Gruden hosted — and paid for — a free barbecue for Raiders fans. Gruden teamed up with the Raiders and Ricky's Sports Theater and Grill in San Leandro, Calif. as a way to show thanks and gratitude for the support of the Raider Nation. Over 500 Raiders fans showed up to the event that had music, raffles, and appearances from Raiders alumni. This was the final event before the Raiders begin their training camp next week in Napa. Chris Booker Las Vegas Review-Journal
TOP NEWS
News Headlines
ad-infeed_1
ads_infeed_2
Local Spotlight
Add Event
Home Front Page Footer Listing
Circular
You May Like

You May Like