New Chargers kicker Nick Novak figures he won the job with the team because of familiarity.
Novak, who was in training camp with the Chargers in 2010, signed a two-year contract after beating out two other kickers on Tuesday. He went through his first practice with the Bolts on Wednesday.
Novak replaces Nate Kaeding, who is out for the year after injuring his left knee on the season’s opening kickoff on Sunday.
“I think it was going out and competing and making the most of the opportunity when I was in camp last year,” Novak said. “Even though it was Nate’s job and I was basically a camp guy last year, I was approaching it as, you better make the most of this because they’re watching you every single day. A tryout’s only one day and they got to see me for an entire summer.”
Novak has kicked in 22 NFL games, making 19 of 30 career field goal attempts (.633). He’s played with Washington, Arizona and Kansas City. Although he kicked in the UFL last year, he hasn’t kicked in an NFL game since 2008.
Kaeding came into the season as the most accurate kicker in NFL history, having made 86.5 percent of his field goal attempts, 173 of 200, in the previous seven seasons.
“I just want to make the most of the opportunity. It’s exciting,” Novak said. “They’re used to a very high level of consistency here and I want to be able to match that every single day and gain the confidence of my teammates and the coaching staff.”