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Nick Hardwick to continue playing

Nick Hardwick, Philip Rivers AP

Stalwart Chargers center Nick Hardwick will not retire at the age of 30.

He informed Kevin Acee of the recently renamed U-T San Diego that he plans to continue playing football after briefly considering retirement. An unrestricted free agent, Hardwick doesn’t fear that his indecision will hurt his market value.

“My commitment is full throttle,” Hardwick said. “I just think you have to re-assess yourself all the time – assess how you’re progressing, assess where you stand. I’m more excited right now than I’ve been in a long time to train. Obviously, two weeks off was enough to get the itch.”

Hardwick talked a lot about the future of the Chargers offensive line. It sounds like he thinks he’ll be part of it.

“I obviously have a lot of best friends in that building, including on the coaching staff. I’d certainly like [to stay]. I hope I’m in their plans. If not, we’re ready to go on,” Hardwick said.

There’s no need for Hardwick to sell himself short. Behind Packers center Scott Wells, he’s likely to be the best free agent center available this offseason.

It sounds like Chargers guard Kris Dielman, who is also mulling retirement, will return to the team. Acee expects the team to make an effort to re-sign left tackle Jared Gaither.

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9 Responses to “Nick Hardwick to continue playing”
  1. chc4 says: Feb 14, 2012 8:54 AM

    I don’t want to hear about Hardwick suing in the NFL in 10 years for post-concussion issues. He knows the risks of playing. Whatever happens now is all on him.

  2. joetoronto says: Feb 14, 2012 9:30 AM

    “I obviously have a lot of best friends in that building, including on the coaching staff.”

    There’s a great example of why Norval will never win a Super Bowl as a HC, players can’t be your friends with coaches.

  3. johanneschimpo says: Feb 14, 2012 9:47 AM

    As opposed to the players that don’t know the risks of playing? What a dope.

  4. illinininer says: Feb 14, 2012 9:54 AM

    I don’t understand the Chargers. From my understanding Hardwick is a very good center. Why don’t they already have him locked up? Do they just draft and develop players for the rest of the league?

  5. indywilson40 says: Feb 14, 2012 10:44 AM

    Come home to Indy Harddick. We need a center.

  6. xli2006 says: Feb 14, 2012 11:38 AM

    He could always come back home to Indy. I believe he was planning on moving back there anyway after his career. Colts need help on the OLine, he was going there eventually… Makes sense.

  7. mrgroovesd says: Feb 14, 2012 11:59 AM

    Glad to hear…AJ, Sign the man!

  8. hooterdawg says: Feb 14, 2012 12:22 PM

    U-T San Diego could be mistaken for University of Texas – San Diego. Mack Brown and Norv Turner have had equal futility over the last couple of years.

  9. jagerbolt says: Feb 14, 2012 12:25 PM

    It’s never been a question about whether or not the Chargers want him – they do.

    He understandably had to think over if it was worth it still when his close friend Kris Dielman had a concussion so bad that he had a seizure.

    Glad to see he wants to still play, get’em signed AJ!

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