On December 4th, 2017, whilst the Pittsburgh Steelers played against the Cincinnati Bengals, 25-year-old Steelers linebacker, Ryan Shazier (#50), suffered a major spinal contusion after making a routine tackle attempt. Immediately after the injury, Shazier was taken by ambulance to the University of Cincinnati Medical Center. Once he was deemed stable enough for travel, Shazier was transferred to the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC) where he underwent spinal stabilization surgery on December 6th, which was performed by UPMC neurosurgeons and Pittsburgh Steelers team physicians, Drs. David Okonkwo and Joseph Maroon.
On December 14th, ten days after his injury, UPMC announced that Shazier had begun physical rehabilitation.
This past Thursday, (02/01/2018), Ryan Shazier was discharged from UPMC Rehabilitation Institute after regaining movement in his legs and engaging in a regular walking routine with assistance. Shazier is expected to continue his recovery in an outpatient program. Luckily, it appears that he will be O.K. after this serious injury, but Steelers managers and coaches have signed LB Sean Spence incase the months of recovery that Shazier is expected to need, run into the start of next years football season.