Nickerson Humbled By Brooks

May 6th, 2014

Former Bucs LB Hardy Nickerson remembers Derrick Brooks’ first days with the Bucs.

Today, when it was announced Mr. Derrick Brooks would be the latest inductee into the Buccaners Ring of Honor, and that his No. 55 will never be worn in a game again, Brooks, of course, took the podium for a few words.

Brooks used the opportunity to brush up on his Pro Football Hall of Fame speech later this summer. He thanked several people for his career, including former linebacker teammate Hardy Nickerson.

“He taught me how to work,” Brooks said.

Nickerson, now the Bucs’ linebacker coach, sat in the back of the auditorium and was humbled to hear Brooks call out his name.

“It feels real good,” Nickerson said of Brooks’ words after the ceremony. “It means a lot. At the time I was the older guy on the team and young guys looked at me for leadership. I was doing the best I could to kind of show the way. We were at a time when we were not winning a whole lot. So we were all kind of pushing to try to turn this thing around. So that was the way I had to carry it. Be that elder statesman and be that leader around the locker room.

“So what I tried to do is be the best player I could and do my part. Show up every day. Be a pro. Taking notes and making sure I was prepared. That was what I was trying to do.”

Nickerson remembered well his first couple of practices alongside Brooks after he was drafted in the first round out of Florida State. Nickerson remembered his first impression all too well.

“Oh, man. Tremendous talent,” Nickerson said. “That’s what I thought. You could tell right away. You saw the things he did in college and then when you saw him on the practice fields you were like, ‘Whoa! This guy is going to be really good. Really good.’”

5 Responses to “Nickerson Humbled By Brooks”

  1. gatrbuc17 Says:

    Can’t wait to see Lavonte David fill those shoes. GO BUCS

  2. duthty rhothdes Says:

    Hardy was a true pro and glad he is back because the bucs were terrible then and he showed up to work and did his thing 100 miles and hour and was one of only things to cheer for back in those days……….. anyone happen to see the trent dilfer thing on draft of ’94, what a loser that guy is

  3. Burl Morgan Says:

    To this day, I still can’t believe how many teams passed on Derrick in the draft. Hardy was the perfect mentor, so glad he’s one of our coaches. Can’t wait for the season to start!!!

  4. William Says:

    LD should shine even brighter with HN as LB coach.

    I’m anxious to see this defense execute this season. Blackouts should be a thing of the past soon….

    Connor Shaw is coming to Tampa

  5. BUC IT Says:

    Hardy is awesome!