Steelers News

Larry Ogunjobi Focusing On Resilience After Injury-Impacted Year: ‘Trust Your Process’

A foot injury in the playoffs in the 2021 season cost Larry Ogunjobi a deal worth over $10 million per season. The defensive lineman agreed in principle early in free agency to sign with the Chicago Bears, only for them to rescind their offer after failing him on his physical.

He ended up signing a one-year, $8 million contract months later with the Pittsburgh Steelers. They were willing to sign him, in spite of the fact that he was still recovering from a foot injury, following Stephon Tuitt’s retirement.

You can say overall that it worked out, but Ogunjobi still played through a series of injuries throughout the year that surely served some limiting role in his effectiveness. While that’s obviously not the plan going forward, he believes it’s important to stay the course.

Sometimes you just have to be resilient and trust your process”, Teresa Varley recently quoted him as saying for an article published on the team’s website. “There’s obviously ups and downs. Seasons can play out a whole bunch of different ways. You take it one day at a time, stay focused, trust your process and just find ways to get better each and every day”.

While his foot may never have been 100% throughout the year, he also dealt with several other issues over the course of the season. He suffered a back injury in October, as well as a knee injury weeks later, missing a game because of the latter. He also found himself listed on injury reports due to his toe, but did not miss a game even if he was listed as questionable once or twice.

The sack numbers did not bear it out, but he still managed to be effective in replacing Tuitt for the Steelers last season. Most expect the team to make a concerted effort to re-sign him this offseason. After all, they would have to replace him if they don’t. But it won’t be cheap.

Still, the prospect of getting an even better version of him, a healthier version, has to be tempting. And he understands that the injury issues he’s gone through over the course of the past 14 months are simply something he has little control over.

“For me personally, I continue to trust my process to find ways to get better”, he said regarding his recent ailments. “Regardless of the ups and downs of the season, when you’re resilient and trust your own process, things find a way of working out”.

To his credit, he had not missed much time due to injury prior to this past rash. One prior missed game was due to rest, another due to suspension (stemming from the Mason Rudolph incident with Myles Garrett). There is little in his history to suggest his health should be an ongoing concern, at least to public knowledge.

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