Texans kicker Nick Novak, as you likely know, was once caught by CBS cameras urinating into a cup on the sideline in the waning moments of a back-and-forth 2011 game against the Denver Broncos.
I have questions for Mr. Novak, who was then the Chargers' kicker.
Have you, Mr. Novak, had lifelong struggles with emptying your bladder at appropriate times? I often remind my three-year-old son that even if he's playing with his friends, he must stop what he's doing and head to the bathroom when he feels like he has to go pee pee. My son will sometimes lash out and remind me that he's having fun with his playmates, and that I'm an ugly poopyhead, which constitutes the most awful thing he can call another human.
Do you get angry when people remind you to go pee pee in the potty, even if you're on the field, having fun with your friends? Have you called your teammates ugly poopyheads when they see you do the pee pee dance on the sideline and ask you if you need to head to the locker room and urinate? These are honest questions. I'm hoping for honest answers.
I can empathize with Novak. I once drove around my son after two failed nap attempts when he was six months old and had yet to be whipped into shape via sleep training. I was desperate, so I strapped him into his carseat -- an act so psychologically and physically challenging that it makes me gnash my teeth and sweat blood -- and drove around nearby roads, aimlessly, just hoping the kid would stop screaming and pass the hell out.
He did, eventually.
My relief was borderline euphoric until I felt the pressure building in my bladder. It was then that I recalled drinking not one or two, but three seltzer waters before hopping into the car. I pride myself on being able to ignore the pangs of urine begging to exit. My code name is Iron Bladder, which, I suppose, could one day change to Infected Bladder.
Ten minutes passed. The pressure built. Twenty minutes ticked by. I screamed at myself internally for having that third seltzer. Who has three seltzers? Have some self control, man. Agony was all I knew by the thirty-minute mark. There was no choice -- it was now or never. I pulled to the side of the road, grabbed a mostly-empty Gatorade bottle, removed the top, and filled that thing to the top with a firehose of urine.
You and I, Mr. Novak, are not so different. It's just that I didn't have ten million eyes trained during my desperation pee.
Brandon McManus (DEN) vs. San Diego Chargers ($4,800): If we were to evaluate kicker options based solely on fantasy production given up by the kicker's opponent, McManus would be a fairly easy Week 8 fade. Seventeen teams allow more fantasy points per game to enemy kickers than the Chargers. But opportunity is our unelected king of kings, and San Diego is allowing 2.4 field goal tries per contest, fourth most in the NFL. Only seven teams are bleeding more passing yardage to opponents than the Chargers -- another factor in the decision making process of field goal streaming truthers. Both of McManus' double digit outputs this season have come when the Broncos were home favorites. Here we are again in Week 8.
Matt Bryant (ATL) vs. Green Bay Packers ($4,800): Bryant has certainly been a beneficiary of the Falcons' ability to matriculate the pigskin down the field, scoring less than nine fantasy points just once in 2016. Bryant is notching 12.3 fantasy points in 2016 home tilts, and comes into Week 8 against a Green Bay team that has seen kickers score 12 or more points in four of six games. Seven teams allow more field goal tries per game than the Packers, who should have their issues against Atlanta's passing attack with a bevvy of secondary injuries. If you have a little salary left over, work Bryant into your lineup. I would prefer him over the same-priced McManus.
Ciaro Santos (KC) at Indianapolis Colts ($4,600): Santos, featured in this space last week, was solid if unspectacular (10 fantasy points) as the Chiefs ran roughshod over the nonexistent entity we call the New Orleans Saints defense. Santos has another plum matchup in Week 8. Only the Giants allow more fantasy production to kickers than the Colts, who see kickers average 2.9 field goal attempts per contest. Indianapolis opponents are shredding the Colts' defense like a postcoital camper in a Friday the 13th movie (there's your requisite Halloween reference). Five kickers have eclipsed 10 fantasy points against the Colts in 2016. Kansas City's functional aerial attack -- buoyed by a pulverizing ground game -- should have an easy time moving the football against Indy. And unlike last week, I love Santos' price in Week 8.
Nick Novak (HOU) vs. Detroit Lions ($4,500): While the Lions, 23rd in passing yards allowed per game, haven't been overly generous to opposing kickers, Novak is the only minimum priced kicker on FanDuel this week that doesn't have a matchup uglier than Jason Voorhees' unmasked face (there's your second reference, and you're welcome). Novak has been something less than terrible in 2016, managing double digit fantasy points four times despite Brock Osweiler quarterbacking his offense. Detroit gives up two field goal tries per game in away contests. Novak is the guy I'm rolling with in lineups that call for a kicker at rock-bottom price. All signs point to him having something of a floor. You can't say that about many low-priced Week 8 options.
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