In a candid interview, former Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker Ryan Shazier revealed that despite enduring a life-altering spinal cord injury resulting from a brutal on-field collision, he would return to play football if given the chance.
Shazier, a standout athlete from Ohio State, made a name for himself as a stud linebacker for the Steelers during his four-season tenure with the team.
However, his promising career took a harrowing turn in December 2017 during a fateful game against the Cincinnati Bengals.
While attempting to tackle wide receiver Josh Malone, Shazier’s trajectory was altered by a jarring collision, instantly sending shockwaves through his body.
The gravity of the situation was palpable as he clutched his lower back, immobilized on the turf.
17 months ago, the football career and life of the Pittsburgh @steelers’ Ryan Shazier changed in an instant after he suffered a serious spine injury in a head-on tackle.
Shazier has continued to defy the odds throughout his recovery.
Chip Reid has his story pic.twitter.com/ndJI5akvBf
— CBS Evening News (@CBSEveningNews) May 7, 2019
Five months after that catastrophic injury, Ryan Shazier defied the odds and captivated hearts worldwide as he walked across the stage at the 2018 NFL draft, a testament to his unyielding determination and the unwavering support of his medical team and family.
Recently, Shazier shared his story on Colin Cowherd’s Fox Sports 1 program, The Herd During the interview.
Cowherd posed the direct question, “If you could do it all over again, with the knowledge you have, would you play again?”
Without hesitation, Shazier’s response resonated with conviction: “100 percent.” He elaborated, “If I could, right now, wake up tomorrow, and they say, ‘hey Ryan, you’re 100 percent healthy,’ I would call coach (Mike) Tomlin, ‘hey, I know I wouldn’t be able to play against the Ravens, but, hey, let me figure out if I can work my way back to being on the team.'”
Shazier expressed gratitude for the transformative journey his injury set in motion: “I’m very happy with what I went through,” Shazier affirmed. “Because it gave me a whole different perspective on life and the people I’m around now. I’ve learned so much more through this journey that I’ve been on than I would have if I never got hurt.”