Ryan Shazier hasn’t let a serious spinal injury affect his long-term football outlook.
The Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker said he wants to play again, and he wants to be one of the best linebackers ever. He talked to Steelers fullback Roosevelt Nix on Nix’s podcast, which was the first interview for Shazier since his injury. Shazier, who was injured making a tackle against the Bengals on Dec. 4, made it clear he isn’t giving up his football career.
“I got to get back,” Shazier told Nix, via the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. “Right now I’m reading a book and it’s basically saying trust the process. I’m really trusting the process. I know the end goal. So I’m taking every step of the way, I’m giving everything I got. The therapists are like, ‘Man this is crazy; I’ve never seen anyone work this hard.’ They almost see progression every day.
“They say like some progressions they see week to week, they see from me day to day. I’m really trying to come back and still be a Pro Bowler.”
The 3rd episode is out @RyanShazier and I chop it up on my podcast show…. tell me what you think
— 5⃣Roosevelt nix (@Dat_Dude_Nix) February 21, 2018
Shazier talked about his goal, which he had since college, of making the Pro Football Hall of Fame. He still has that goal.
“I’m still reaching for that Hall of Fame because I really feel I’m the best linebacker ever,” Shazier said on Nix’s podcast. “I just got to be back out there so everybody can see it. You know what I’m saying?”
Shazier seems to be a long way from playing. On Feb. 6 he stood up, with some help, at a Pittsburgh Penguins game when he was shown on the arena’s video screen, and he told Nix it was important for fans to see him standing. Shazier told Nix he has a larger appreciation for people in wheelchairs since his injury.
“The thing that’s so funny is like when I do the littlest things, peopled don’t understand how much people appreciate this right now,” Shazier told Nix. “Like the process of me trying to get my feeling back to stand up and all that. Everything I did, I appreciated every moment.”
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