Hardy Nickerson Returns

December 6th, 2013

Nickerson left the Bucs’ radio booth to coach linebackers for Lovie Smith in Chicago in 2007. He wants to coach again.

Has it really been 20 years since the Bucs signed Hardy Nickerson to dominate the middle of their defense?

Damn, that makes Joe feel old.

Nickerson, who went to five Pro Bowls with Tampa Bay, joined the Ron and Ian show on WDAE-AM 620 this morning to talk about his rare visit to Tampa for the Bucs-Bills game Sunday. (He was invited to do promotional work for the Bucs) and chatted about wanting to return to the NFL coaching ranks.

He coached linebackers for Lovie Smith’s Bears in 2007. (Now there’s one for the Lovie-for-Schiano crowd.)

Referencing his time in Year 1 of the Tony Dungy regime, Nickerson shared an interesting bit of wisdom from that season. “Optimism comes from seeing that weekly improvement.” Joe suspects that will be a very telling theme for the remainder of the Bucs’ 2013 season.

Nickerson also went on to talk about how he doesn’t think he could play in today’s anti-hitting NFL, and he shared thoughts on Lavonte David and more.

Enjoy the full audio of the interview below. For those who like video, the Bucs popped a neat video feature on Nickerson on the team website.

17 Responses to “Hardy Nickerson Returns”

  1. d-money Says:

    Hardy was the lone bright spot on some pretty bad Bucs teams.

    He was my favorite player from moment he stepped on the field in a Bucs uniform.

    I hated to see him go and not be a part of the success that was to come in the years after he left but he definitley had a big hand in changing the culture around 1BP.

  2. satchel page Says:

    Maybe he will have a hand in changing the culture again. Promote Dominik to President of Football Operations (handling cap & contracts) and hire Derrick Brooks as the GM. Let DB get an NFL staff in here and start over.

  3. Ian P. Says:

    Everyone once in a while it’s good to be reminded how awesome he was. Thanks.

  4. DWC2 Says:

    I would love it if JBF could do a weekly segment on “Where are they now” on many of the Buc’s of the past.

  5. Northend Says:

    The Hardware Man !!!!
    Dude used to roll into the player lot at the sombrero in his sisters purple piece of crap ford.Would always stop and sign stuff for the kids (Alstott always did the same)?He said he like driving it to games so no one would F Up his regular upscale ride.Remember player lot was mall side next to general lot at the time.He was a class act.Still have signed glossy from him in my office on wall.He really should be in ring of honor.I think he helped groom 55 and set the tone for the decade of dominance .My Fav Buc of all time for sure.Much Respect Hardy!

  6. Adam L. Says:

    Anyone remember Hardy’s Nike commercial with Dennis Hopper?

    “Bad things, man. Bad things.”

  7. LUVMYBUCS Says:

    El Dragon…smh, words can’t explain how much he changed our organization around.
    Was the BEST Free agent signing we’ve EVER had.He was a leader on a very good Steelers Defense before he even arrived here. And he berung that swagger with’em..

    I mean Foster is nice, but we really haven’t had a player of his caliber in the middle of our defense since Hardy.

    Dennis Hopper Hardy Nickerson Nike Commercial

  8. LUVMYBUCS Says:

    Lol Classic

  9. Jack Burton Mercer Says:

    Bad things is right. Loved Nickerson. And I agree he had nearly as much to do with the turnaround as Dungy did. I remember stories about him simply refusing to accept the mediocrity in which he first found himself as a member of the Bucs.

  10. LUVMYBUCS Says:

    Why is Hardy not in the Hall?

  11. LUVMYBUCS Says:

    @Jack Burton Mercer Says

    Of course the ravens had better pash rushers. But to this day I’ve never seen a defense tackle like our 99′ Defense. Hardy had them boys moving. I know Derrick was like man, I thought I left “Shade Tree” back in Tallahassee. Now look at this monster.

  12. LUVMYBUCS Says:


  13. Adam L. Says:

    If Hardy is not in the ROH conversation, someone needs a beat-down. I’ve heard D. Brooks talk about how Nickerson was the veteran voice of those late-90s teams. I don’t think his value can be found on the stat sheets.

  14. Luther Says:

    The single best Free-agent that the Bucs have ever signed. He brought accountability to this team. There all kinds of stories of him busting guys chops for not putting forth effort in practice. He should most definitely be in the Ring of Honor.

  15. RastaMon Says:

    Hardy was the “corner”….the FA signing ..yes newbee’s …the F in FA was for Fuedal….Hardy stood on the transitional corner and laid don the law for all the greatness to follow…..

  16. Buc1987 Says:

    @Adam…yep I’ll never forget those commericals. I used to mimic that line all the time back in the day for just about everything. Bad things man, bad things.

    On another note. I really don’t want to bring anymore damn signs to the games anymore, but I’m seriously considering bringing a sign that says No More Stunts to the game this Sunday.

  17. JoeBucsFan.com » Blog Archive » Hardy Nickerson Returns To Coach LBs - Tampa Bay Bucs Football Says:

    […] surprise here. Bucs icon Hardy Nickerson said on WDAE-AM 620 last month that he wanted out of coaching high school football in California and back into the big […]