Nick Novak’s back injury forces Chargers punter Drew Kaser to fill in as kicker – Orange County Register

ARLINGTON, Texas — Drew Kaser did not attempt a field goal in high school. He did not attempt a field goal in college. And despite being forced into emergency kicking duties on Thanksgiving, he has yet to attempt a field goal in the NFL.

The Chargers punter got the first point of his career on Thursday, making one of his three extra-point attempts in a 28-6 win over the Cowboys at AT&T Stadium. But when the team faced fourth-and-13 on the Dallas 16-yard line in the second quarter, Chargers coach Anthony Lynn attempted to convert — forgoing a chance at three points.

“Someone told me he was practicing his kicks and he missed the whole damn net,” Lynn said of Kaser. “So I decided to go for it.”

For what it’s worth, Kaser claims he did not miss the whole damn net.

“There was a hole in the net,” he said. “And it went through the hole.”

Regardless of where that ball actually went, it’s hard to fault Kaser’s struggles as the replacement kicker. The second-year punter was forced into the role due to Nick Novak’s back injury, one that had limited the veteran kicker during a short week of practices. Clearly hampered, Novak pushed a 35-yarder wide right in the first quarter — his first miss from inside 40 yards since 2014.

Novak made a 22-yard field goal in the second quarter, but also missed an extra point for the first time this season.

The Chargers (5-6) turned to Kaser for most of the second half. He made an extra point with 1:52 left in the third quarter — bumping his team’s lead to 16-0, but missed his next two tries. Had the Chargers scored another touchdown, Lynn said he likely would have gone for two points.

This wasn’t the first time a team has lost a kicker mid-game. This past Sunday, Eagles kicker Jake Elliott suffered a concussion in the same stadium. Philadelphia turned to linebacker Kamu…

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