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Redskins Sign Novak; Hall Placed On IR

The Redskins have re-signed kicker Nick Novak, the team announced on Tuesday. Novak will take over place kicking duties for John Hall, who was placed on injured reserve.

Novak returns to the Redskins after spending the latter half of the 2005 regular season and the 2006 preseason with the Arizona Cardinals.

The former Maryland standout made his NFL debut with the Redskins on Sept. 19, 2005, against the Dallas Cowboys on Monday Night Football. He ended up kicking a game-winning PAT to defeat the Cowboys 14-13 at Texas Stadium, and he also had a touchdown-saving tackle on a kickoff return in that game.

Two weeks later, on Oct. 3, 2005, Novak was the hero of FedExField, after kicking a game-winning 39-yard field goal in overtime to help the Redskins defeat the Seattle Seahawks 20-17.

Overall, Novak was 5-of-7 on field goals, with a long of 39 yards, and 15-of-15 on PATs for the Redskins.

Novak was released by the Redskins on Nov. 5, 2005, when John Hall was healthy again. Novak landed with the Arizona Cardinals and played in five games. He was 3-of-3 on field goals for the Cardinals, finishing the season with 39 points.

Now, with Hall sidelined for the remainder of the season, Novak is back with the Redskins, the team that gave him his first chance in the NFL.

Hall has struggled through injuries each of the last three seasons. He experienced fatigue and soreness in his upper leg region last week, and was diagnosed with a strained quad and strained thigh.

Novak was a four-year letterman at Maryland and finished his career as the leading scorer in ACC history and tied for fifth in NCAA Division I-A history with 393 career points on 80-of-107 field goals and 153-of-159 PATs. Novak hails from nearby Charlottesville, Va. and prepped at Albermarle High School.

Along with Novak, the Redskins also worked out kickers Todd Peterson, Jose Cortez and Tyler Jones on Tuesday.

Peterson, a 13-year veteran, kicked for the Atlanta Falcons last season. The much-traveled Cortez kicked for the Redskins during the 2002 season. Jones spent time with the Redskins in training camp last year.

Punter Sean Landeta, a 21-year NFL veteran who played for the Philadelphia Eagles last season, was also at Redskins Park working out for team officials.

The Redskins also completed a practice squad move on Tuesday, signing offensive lineman Nick Steitz and releasing C.J. Brooks.

Steitz is a first-year player who spent 2006 training camp with the New England Patriots. He played his college ball at Oregon and started 35 consecutive games at left guard, earning All-Pac 10 honor twice.

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