If you weren’t talking about Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker Ryan Shazier at your workplace Monday morning, you probably missed Sunday’s game against the San Francisco 49ers. Shazier, the Steelers former first-round draft out of Ohio State, had the best game of his young career against the 49ers and it included him registering 15 total tackles, a sack, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery.
Below are just a few of the plays that the Steelers young linebacker made on Sunday.
After already registering two tackles and two assist early in the game, Shazier tackled 49ers running back Carlos Hyde for a one-yard loss on an outside zone to run to the right. On the play, Shazier uses his speed and agility as he gets skinny enough to shoot the B-gap in order to take down Hyde.
On the first play of the second half, Shazier really showed us something encouraging as he stacked and shed the tight end on his way to tackling Hyde again for a loss. This play starts off with him as the strong outside linebacker in the Steelers 4-3 stack look. In the second gif below you can really see him use his arms well to dispose of the tight end.
A few plays later, out of the same defensive formation, Shazier again shoots the B-gap on an outside zone run on his way to tackling Hyde for yet another loss. The 49ers were called for clipping on the play, but it was a solid effort by Shazier nonetheless.
Against the 49ers, Shazier certainly did an admirable job when it came to helping contain mobile quarterback Colin Kaepernick. On this play, Shazier, who has zone coverage in the middle of the field on a blitz, makes sure to keep his eyes on Kaepernick and in essence mirror him in the pocket. When the 49ers quarterback tucks the football and runs, Shazier is there to limit him to a two-yard gain.
During the 49ers next offensive series, Kaepernick runs the read option off left guard and again we get to see Shazier stack and shed on his way to making the tackle and forced fumble. This time it is highly-regarded left tackle Joe Staley who he disposes of in order to make the play. Below are two gifs of the play for you to see.
Finally, on this 4th and 1 play deep in the Steelers own end with 3:51 left in the third quarter, Shazier follows the left guard on his pull to the right and manages to shoot between him and the right tackle in order to hit running back Mike Davis. Davis did pick up the first down on the play thanks to a generous spot, however, but it was a great effort by the Steelers linebacker just the same.