It doesn’t look like Sebastian Janikowski will be returning to Seattle in 2019.
According to ESPN.com, the Seahawks plan to sign kicker Jason Myers, and based on the money they’re going to give him, it’s pretty clear the team expects Myers to be the starter for quite awhile. The reported four-year deal is worth between $15 million and $16 million.
Oddly enough, the Seahawks actually signed Myers last offseason, but they ended up cutting him in August after he lost the kicking job to Janikowski. The Seahawks clearly have had a change of heart and that’s probably because Myers is coming off the best season of his career.
The 27-year-old hit 91.7 percent of his field goals with the Jets in 2018, which ranked seventh overall in the NFL and was the best for any AFC kicker who played the entire season. Myers also had a game in 2018 where he hit seven field goals, which is tied for the second most in one game in NFL history.
Myers’ season actually ended up being so impressive that he was named the Pro Bowl kicker in the AFC. Although Janikowski is known for his ability to hit long kicks, Myers can also hit those. With the Jets last season, Myers hit six field goals from beyond 50 yards, which was tied with Cowboys kicker Brett Maher for the most in the NFL.
Like any deal in free agency, there’s always some risk and this one is no different. Although Myers is coming off an impressive 2018 season, he hit just 79.4 percent of his field goals in 2016 and was even worse with a 73.3 percent conversion rate in 2017.
Myers has also struggled on extra points since the NFL moved the kick back in 2015. Over the past four seasons, Myers has hit just 87.6 percent of his extra points (106 of 121), which is the third worst percentage in the NFL for any kicker who attempted more than 10 extra points over that span. Myers hit just 90.3 percent of his extra points in 2018, which ranked 26th in the NFL last season. The kicker’s inability to stay consistent on extra points is a big reason why Seattle will be his third team in three years.
As for Janikowski, unless Seattle decides to carry two kickers, the 41-year-old will be headed for free agencywith the Seahawks. Although he’ll probably get signed, it will most likely come in the form of a one-year deal due to his injury history.
The Polish Cannon spent the 2017 season on injured reserve with the Raiders due to a back issue and during the Seahawks’ 24-22 playoff loss to the Cowboys in January.