Winnipeg – The battle for the left guard job on the Winnipeg Blue Bomber offensive line was still being waged as the Bombers held their final double workout of training camp. And no-one is more anxious about the outcome than 26 year old Jermarcus Hardrick.
Hardrick has had his share of hard knocks in two previous CFL seasons. In 2014 he started 10 games for the B.C. Lions, only to be released the following spring. Saskatchewan gave Hardrick his next shot, and he started 8 games for the Riders in 2015 before being cut this winter by the new regime in Regina.
So with cutdown date looming, Hardrick is taking nothing for granted and admits he is a bit on edge. “I’m loving the process and the camaraderie and a chance to play with the guys and the connection. But it’s still a work in progress, I’m waiting for the final roster to come and if it happens, it happens and if it don’t happen, I can still look in the mirror and say I gave it my all. I’m very nervous, this is the third team in three years and I haven’t made one team out of training camp so this would be big for me. It will my first time making it if I do” said Hardrick.
Hardrick can play both tackle and guard and on Thursday in practice he lined up with the first team at left guard. Said Hardrick “I love being at guard, I can be physical, it would be a blessing if I could play beside Stanley Bryant. I always watch Stanley, he’s about 5 years older than me so I look up to the guy. I want Drew Willy to be great and I want to be one of the guys to make Drew Willy great this year.”
Hardrick, a product of Nebraska, is battling Jace Daniels for a starting spot. By Saturday, when the Bombers announce their final cuts, Hardrick and a lot of other players will find out if they have gained employment, or will have to continue the search for a football home.