Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
Available On Air Stations

San Diego Chargers Center Nick Hardwick Announces Retirement

San Diego Chargers center Nick Hardwick (61) on the sidelines during the first half of an NFL football game against the Miami Dolphins in Miami Gardens, Fla., Nov. 17, 2013.
Lynne Sladky / Associated Press
San Diego Chargers center Nick Hardwick (61) on the sidelines during the first half of an NFL football game against the Miami Dolphins in Miami Gardens, Fla., Nov. 17, 2013.

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."

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.

What questions do you have about the Statewide General Election coming up on Nov. 8? Submit your questions here, and we'll try to answer them in our reporting.