Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker Ryan Shazier says his “dream” is to return to the NFL after suffering a spinal injury last season.
Shazier has already been placed on the reserve/physically unable to perform list, meaning he will miss the 2018 season.
But, in his first press conference since suffering the injury in Week 13 of the last campaign, he said he is working towards an eventual return.
“My dream is to come back and play football again,” Shazier said. “I’ve been working my tail off every single day, so I have that in the back of my mind every single time I go to rehab.
“I just try to stay positive every day, so I’m just trying to do everything I can to get back.”
It took a month for Shazier to regain feeling in his legs after the injury, which required spinal stabilisation surgery. In April, he used a cane to walk to the podium in Dallas to announce the Steelers’ first-round pick at the NFL Draft.
1:50 Shazier walked to the podium in Dallas with a cane
He said he is continuing to make progress and his medical team is encouraged.
“They feel like I’m doing a lot better than they expected,” he said.
“One of the things I’m looking forward to doing is I just want to be able to start walking a little bit more by myself without using a cane.
“And if that’s camp, I’m happy for it. If it’s the regular season, I’ll be happy for it.”
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