Sebastian Janikowski is a Polish-born American football player who is the current placekicker signed with the Seattle Seahawks of the National Football League (NFL). For the 2000 NFL Draft, he was the 17th overall draft which was facilitated by the Oakland Raiders making him the very first kicker to be taken in the maiden round especially in the modern NFL era.
Due to his on-field performance, he was given the nickname, Seebass,” a name he wears proudly having tied the previous NFL record for the longest field goal at a staggering 63 yards. Sebastian shares this record collectively with David Akers, Jason Elam, and Tom Dempsey. Discover more details about this exceptional athlete below.
Who is Sebastian Janikowski?
Sebastian Paweł Janikowski was born in Wałbrzych, Poland on the 2nd of March 1978 to parents Henryk Janikowski and Halina Janikowski. His father was a professional soccer player in his home country Poland but he decided to relocate to the United States in the early 1980s in search of a better life for himself and family and hopefully revive his career in soccer. Few years after Janikowski’s father moved to the U.S, he divorced his mother in order to marry an American woman. Whilst he was left with his mother, Sabastian also developed a strong passion for football and he did well to hone his skills to the point of mastery. This massive development in the sport earned him a place on the Polish under-17 team when he was 15 years of age.
Luckily for Sebastian, his father’s union with a woman from the United States granted him the opportunity to move there as a legal resident. His arrival to the U.S was quite tough at the beginning stemming from the fact that he could speak very little English but with time he got accustomed to the environment and improved his English by watching television programs as well as attending a three-week evening class.
Sebastian was selected as a part of the Orangewood Christian soccer team, though he got the chance to only play five games for the team, he helped them advance to the Class A State Championship having scored a record 15 goals. However, his team eventually lost 3-2 to Lakeland Christian through penalty, he was hailed as an instrumental part of the team’s laudable performance. Still residing with his father and his stepmother in Orlando, Florida, he later signed up with the under-19 soccer team of the Orlando Lions which was then coached by Angello Rossi. Rossi, who saw great potential in Sebastian convinced his father, Henryk to let him transfer to Seabreeze High School located in Daytona Beach were Rossi was also a coach. As a result of this move, Sebastian had to move in with coach Rossi and his family.
He performed incredibly well for the football team at Seabreeze as a placekicker and was also in the school’s soccer team. Some of his feat in his high school football play include; a four field goal of 50+ yards, 60 yards, and a kick of 82-yard field goal. For his university education and collegiate career, Sebastian decided to pitch his tent at the Florida State University, where he played for the Florida State Seminoles football team coached by Bobby Bowden. In 1999, he got honored for the second year in a row with the Lou Groza Award, an award given to the nation’s best collegiate kicker.
After graduating from College, Sebastian Janikowski had a lot of scout pitching to get him on their team of which he eventually got drafted by the Oakland Raiders. This draft made history as he became the fourth placekicker in NFL history to be taken in the first round of the draft as the 17th overall pick in the 2000 NFL Draft. On the 12th of September, Sebastian tied the NFL record set by Tom Dempsey in 1970 as well as Jason Elam in 1998 after he made a 63-yard field goal during the rainy first half against the Denver Broncos.
Two months later (on the 27th of November, 2011), he broke the team record of most field goals in a single game after making a total of 6 goals- 40, 47, 42, 19, 37, and 44 yards in the game against the Chicago Bears. As at the 2017 season, he had played a total of 268 games with the raider for which he holds the record for the most games played.
It’s no hidden secret that athletes especially NFL players are smiling real good to the bank every now and then, making some of us who do not play sport wish we did. I mean who wouldn’t want to live the good life. For Sebastian, though he didn’t start out with much in terms of his family background, his skills have definitely paved a way for him in terms of fame and fortune. Over the years, his earnings have also increased exponentially, as his estimated net worth currently holds at a whopping $14 million, a pretty impressive one indeed.
Personal Life: Married, Wife
As with most top NFL players, their private lives are usually keenly hidden from the public eye, something we are yet to fathom but hey- it’s their personal life, we guess they have the right to decide whether or not they want to make certain aspects of their lives public or not.
With Sebastian, the narrative is similar as little is known about his relationships but one thing that is known is that he is a married man and the name of his wife is Lori Janikowski. According to reports, he and Lori began dating in 2003 and got married in 2008. Together the couple has two adorable daughters who happen to be twins. Their names are, Mila Janikowski and Vi Janikowski. Interestingly the couple is expecting their third child who is also a girl.
Contact sports such as the American football is one not for the faint-hearted or the unfit, it is a sport that requires a certain height and mass if one would fare well as a player because it sure can get messy on the field of play. For Sebastian, he is well equipped for the tough nature of the sport as he has the right kind of body type(with a height of 6.2 m and weight of 240 lbs) to favorably compete among equally tough opponents.