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Steelers says Ryan Shazier will not play in 2018

Steelers says Ryan Shazier will not play in 2018

Last week, in his first public comments since suffering a spinal injury during a game against the Cincinnati Bengals on Dec. 4, Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker Ryan Shazier expressed his desire to get back onto the field.

“I got to get back, bro,” Shazier said on teammate Roosevelt Nix’s podcast. “Right now I’m reading a book, and it’s basically saying trust the process, bro. 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, they be like, ‘Man, this is crazy. … I’ve never seen anyone work this hard.’ They almost see progression like almost every day.”

On Wednesday, however, Steelers General Manager Kevin Colbert acknowledged that a comeback won’t be happening anytime soon.

“Ryan Shazier won’t play in 2018,” he told reporters at the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis. “He knows that, and we know that.”

Colbert did say that Shazier will “still be with the team officially and unofficially.”

Shazier underwent spinal stabilization surgery a couple of days after he suffered the injury and spent two months in the hospital before being released to an outpatient therapy program. He has made a few public appearances, including one at a Pittsburgh Penguins hockey game in which he stood up with a little help. But it’s unclear where Shazier is in his recovery process.

In January, his father said he had regained feeling in his legs. According to ESPN, the linebacker has used a wheelchair since the injury.