Ryan Shazier – Pittsburgh Steelers #50

Ryan Shazier

Ryan Shazier was born on September 6th 1992 in Lauderdale Lakes, Florida.

He played college football for Ohio State in the linebacker position for the Buckeye’s, under the coaching of Urban Meyer. He decided not to play his senior year of college football, instead opting to join the 2014 NFL draft. He was picked up by the Pittsburgh Steelers as the fifteenth overall pick.

He was thrown straight into the Steelers starting line-up in that season’s opener against the Cleveland Browns. In April 2017, after 3 stellar seasons for Pittsburgh, the Steelers exercised their option to extend his contract for a fifth year.

In the same 2017 season, disaster struck for Shazier and he suffered a severe spinal injury against the Cincinnati Bengals. He was placed on the Injured Reserve list (IR) for the 2 years that ensued and on March 17th 2020, he was placed on the Reserve/Retired list, thus prematurely ending the career of a great prospect who never got the chance to shine as brightly as he could have due to the terrible injury sustained that dark night in December 2017.

He was called up to two Pro Bowls – including the season of his injury, which he obviously couldn’t play in.

Despite doctors telling him he may be paralyzed for the rest of his life, Shazier danced at his own wedding seventeen months after sustaining the injury.