Philip Rivers will have the familiarity of his longtime starting center for another year.
"I told them I expect to play next season," Hardwick told U-T San Diego. "I'm excited about it."
Hardwick suffered a concussion during San Diego's playoff win over the Cincinnati Bengals. He also has a history of neck stingers to go along with all the bumps and bruises that come with a decade of life in the NFL trenches.
"I wanted to take a month off where I didn't have to think about football," he said. "I just wanted to be honest with where my body is, where my brain is, where we're at and where we want to go. Just give an honest assessment. My body feels great. My brain feels great. I do think there's better football ahead of me."
That's one less concern for general manager Tom Telesco this offseason.