The Pittsburgh Steelers updated the status of linebacker Ryan Shazier Thursday afternoon via a short statement.
According to the team’s release, Shazier underwent spinal stabilization surgery Wednesday night at UPMC and the procedure was performed by neurosurgeons and team physicians David Okonkwo and Joseph Maroon.
— Burt Lauten (@SteelersPRBurt) December 7, 2017
While nothing has been made official, it would appear as though Shazier’s 2017 season has come to an end as a result of the spine injury he suffered during the first quarter of the Monday night game against the Cincinnati Bengals. For now, all we can do is continue to hope and pray that he’ll continue to make improvements in his attempt to live a normal life again and perhaps ultimately be allowed to continue his football career.
Shazier suffered his injury Monday night while attempting to tackle Bengals wide receiver Josh Malone following a short completion to the middle of the field.
After suffering his injury, Shazier was removed from the field on a cart while strapped to flat board. He was then transported by an ambulance to a Cincinnati hospital and he remained there through Tuesday night. On Wednesday, Shazier was reportedly airlifted to UPMC in Pittsburgh.
Shazier, who was drafted by the Steelers in the first round of the 2014 NFL Draft out of Ohio State, had his fifth-year option picked up by the team this past offseason.
With @RyanShazier undergoing spine surgery, it’s safe to assume he is done for the season. And of course the primary concern is his overall recovery, not his career. It all depends on how the nerves are recovery. Have to hope for the best.
— Melanie Friedlander (@Girlsurgeon) December 7, 2017
Alessi says surgery is needed when the "bones around his spinal cord are dislocated. This is a more severe injury (than a contusion.)"
"This is a much more severe situation on our hands than we thought."
— Michele Steele (@ESPNMichele) December 7, 2017
Steelers def. coord. Keith Butler on word that LB Ryan Shazier had spinal stabilization surgery: "I’m not worried about him playing for us again, I’m more worried about him."
— Ed Bouchette (@EdBouchette) December 7, 2017