Ryan Shazier shows up at Steelers practice (Photo)

Pittsburgh Steelers

Ryan Shazier attends his first Pittsburgh Steelers practice since his nightmare injury in Cincinnati.

Steelers linebacker Ryan Shazier attended a Pittsburgh practice for the first time since his tragic spinal injury last month. Despite the road ahead, having Shazier on hand — watching from the sideline in his wheelchair — must’ve felt like a blessing on its own. The 25-year-old expressed his feelings and discussed how amazing it was to return to practice in an Instagram post.

Shazier suffered a scary spinal injury during the first quarter in a game last month against the Cincinnati Bengals. He injured his back while making a tackle and was sent to the hospital after being stretchered off. The Steelers put Shazier on IR days later, ending his season. Over the course of the last few weeks his condition has improved, but there’s still no word on whether he will regain full use of his legs in the short or long-term. On the positive side, Shazier’s father updated the media recently, announcing his son finally regained feelings in his legs.

Shazier made a trip to Heinz Field in Week 15 and was embraced by fans, as expected. Pittsburgh fans roared when his face appeared on the Jumbotron. Despite this, Shazier had yet to attend a practice — until Wednesday.

The Steelers are preparing to take on the Jacksonville Jaguars in the Divisional Round on Sunday at Heinz Field. Although the Steelers will be without Shazier, his courage and presence light a fire and inspire the team.

The Steelers are hoping for a better result than last time they met the Jaguars, a game in which Jacksonville won 30-9. The winner secures their place in the AFC Championship Game against either New England or Tennessee.

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