- Paul Gutierrez, ESPN Staff Writer
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According to the Times Union, Jacksonville Jaguars kicker Josh Scobee said that Janikowski told him he roots against the A's each year because the sooner their season wraps up, the quicker the dirt infield is gone from O.co Coliseum, which both Oakland teams call home. That way, according to the report, Janikowski said he can stop worrying about kicking on slippery dirt.
One issue, though: Janikowski said he never told Scobee such a thing.
And when he saw the story?
"I was pissed off," said Janikowski, who rarely speaks to reporters but was waiting in the middle of the Raiders locker room at the start of the media access period Thursday. "That's why I'm talking to you guys. I wanted to get that straight."
The Raiders are the lone team in the NFL to share a stadium with a major league baseball club, and until the A's season concludes, they must endure playing with dirt in the middle of O.co Coliseum. In fact, the Raiders' home game against the San Diego Chargers on Oct. 6 might be switched to Dec. 22, with Oakland traveling to play the Chargers earlier if the A's are hosting a playoff game too close to that date.
A decision has to be made within two weeks of Oct. 6, according to a team official.
But as far as Janikowski cheering the A's demise?
"Stupid," Janikowski said. "Ridiculous. I root for the A's. We've got an advantage here. I root for the A's. Don't get me wrong; I go to the games. But whatever (Scobee) says, it just blows my mind."
Then, a conversation with Scobee never happened?
"No, didn't happen," Janikowski said. "Hell no. Just wanted to let you know.
"When Jason (Giambi) was with the A's, I was going to games. Now, with two kids, not so much. But they make the postseason? I'm in. I've kicked 14 years on it (the dirt). It really doesn't bother me."
Scobee, meanwhile, has been practicing on a baseball infield in Jacksonville in anticipation of the team's game Sunday at Oakland, which will be playing its home opener. And that's just fine with the Raiders' first-round pick in 2000 and their all-time leading scorer. It's a mind game for visitors. Besides, Janikowski set an NFL record for longest overtime field goal -- on the dirt -- to beat Brett Favre and the New York Jets with a 57-yarder on Oct. 19, 2008.
"I think it's an advantage for us," Janikowski said." Guys come in and they think about it so much: 'Do I have to plant my foot differently? Or whatever. I'm not going to tell them what to do."
Janikowski, though, said he's not going to talk to Scobee on Sunday, either.
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