Shazier, ‘making strides,’ visits Steelers
Pittsburgh Steelers Pro Bowl linebacker Ryan Shazier won’t play again this season, yet he remains very much a part of the team even after suffering a serious injury last month.
He attended practice on Wednesday for the first time since undergoing spine stabilization surgery on Dec. 6 and posted a photo on Instagram from the team’s indoor training facility as Pittsburgh prepared to host Jacksonville on Sunday afternoon in the divisional round of the playoffs. Shazier is pictured in a wheelchair wearing sweatpants and a Steelers jacket, a visit that gave his teammates a lift.
“It was awesome to see him,” guard Ramon Foster said. “Everybody is worried about him and it proves that he’s as strong as it gets.”
The extent of Shazier’s injury has not been released.
In his Instagram post, he said his visit to the facility was “a first down” in his recovery. Shazier wrote he has been “making strides” but added he is “far from done.”
The Steelers got some more good news, as standout wide receiver Antonio Brown had a full practice. He has not played since suffering a calf injury on Dec. 17, but is expected to return Sunday.
Meanwhile, the Jaguars might be without backup linebacker Blair Brown for the game. He suffered a sprained ankle during practice Wednesday and was wearing a walking boot and using crutches to get around the locker room.
That potentially is a big loss, considering starters Telvin Smith and Paul Posluszny also are dealing with injuries.
Saints’ Peat out for rest of payoffs • New Orleans placed left guard Andrus Peat on injured reserve, meaning he won’t be eligible to play until next season. Peat, who suffered a broken leg while playing last weekend, has been a key member of the Saints’ offensive line this season because of his versatility. His main position has been guard, but he has filled in at left tackle when starter Terron Armstead (Cahokia High) has been sidelined because of various injuries.
Titans’ Murray remains sidelined • Tennessee coach Mike Mularkey said running back DeMarco Murray (sprained knee) will not play on Saturday night, against the Patriots in a second-round playoff game. Derrick Henry, who has been filling in, will start his third straight game at running back for the Titans. He ran for 156 yards and a score last weekend, against the Chiefs.
Seahawks dump two assistants • The Seahawks fired offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell and offensive line coach Tom Cable. Bevell was in charge of calling plays, while Cable was responsible for a run game and offensive line that failed to meet expectations. This season Seattle (9-7) missed the playoffs for the first time since 2011.
From news services