Days after general manager Kevin Colbert said that Ryan Shazier will not undergo surgery, the linebacker went under the knife to stabilize his spine.
According to the report, he underwent the surgery in the University Pittsburgh Medical Center. The team has not provided any more update on his condition.
The statement read, “Last night, UPMC neurosurgeons and Pittsburgh Steelers team physicians Drs. David Okonkwo and Joseph Maroon performed spinal stabilization surgery on Ryan Shazier to address his spinal injury.”
Neurologist Dr. Anthony Alessi, who is sometimes tapped by the NFL Players Association, said that spinal injuries are always dangerous, particularly when Shazier had to undergo a stabilization surgery. He told ESPN’s Michele Steele, “It’s not good …We’re not going to see him this season. He may not play football again.”
The fact that doctors had to order a surgery means “the bones around his spinal cord are dislocated,” which means his condition is much more severe than initially thought.
However, Alessi quickly added that he’s not privy to the medical records of Shazier so it’s only his personal opinion based on his experience.
Shazier sustained the injury during a tackle at the first quarter of the game against the Bengals. He was initially stabilized in the University of Cincinnati Medical Center before transported to Pittsburgh.
Ian Rapoport of the NFL Insider tweeted that Shazier’s recovery may take months, which means that he’s done for the season. Still no update whether the athlete has full mobility of his limbs.
Earlier, Mike Tomlin said that if anybody can rise above this new challenge, it would be Shazier because of his attitude and work ethic. “Not only is he mentally tough, but he’s a guy that’s spiritually in a great place,” the Steelers coach added. “And I know that’s an asset for he and his family.”