Nick Hardwick retires from NFL to begin broadcast career

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Nick Hardwick announces his retirement from the San Diego Chargers.

SAN DIEGO — San Diego Chargers center Nick Hardwick formally announced his retirement Tuesday, ending an 11-year career as a professional football player.

The 33-year-old former Pro Bowler and five-time team captain started 146 National Football League games but rode the bench for all but one contest in the 2014 season due to a recurring neck injury.

Hardwick was a third round draft pick out of Purdue University in 2004. He spent all 11 of his seasons in the National Football League as a Charger and was popular with the fans.

“I am so proud to retire from the NFL having spent my entire career with the San Diego Chargers,” Hardwick said at a news conference.

“I want to thank Dean Spanos and the entire Spanos family for bringing me to San Diego, and I especially want to thank all of my teammates, the coaches and staff members who allowed me to spend 11 memorable seasons with the greatest organization in professional football,” he said. “I wish I could play forever, but this game has a finite life and it’s time for me to move on to the next chapter of my life.”

It didn’t take long for the former Chargers center to find a new career path.  KGB announced Tuesday that Hardwick will be a co-host of their afternoon radio show with Clint August starting Monday, Feb. 9.

He and his wife volunteer with the Marine Corps-Law Enforcement Foundation, which raises money to pay for higher education for children of Marines and law enforcement officers killed in the line of duty.

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