Life after football. That’s what Chargers center Nick Hardwick has been thinking about during the off-season.
Hardwick is enrolled in the NFL Business Management and Entrepreneurial Program that offers courses to prepare current players for life after football.
A foot injury two years ago got Hardwick thinking about what he’ll do once he retires.
"It was the worst period of my life, not knowing if I would play again,” he told the North County Times. “It was terrible."
Now, he’s making the most of his down time by joining other NFL players who got a taste of what life would be like if they could no longer play professional football.
"The funny thing is that most of the guys in there were on the verge of retirement or coming off of a serious injury, so we all had time to think about not being able to play anymore," Hardwick said last week during the Chargers' off-season coaching sessions.
"I seriously believe about 90 percent of the guys in there were in that position. Those guys got a slap in the face by reality, who said, 'Hey, man, this gig's not going to last forever, so you might want to start thinking ahead.' "
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The extent of Hardwick’s injury and recovery is explained in the full article.
"There are a lot of options out there, but obviously I want to focus on football right now and be as good as I can at this. But when you have some down time to let your mind escape, it's a good idea to keep pushing yourself and trying to grow as a person."