As we all wait for the 2020 NFL draft, we look back at Steelers Ryan Shazier’s historical moment that won’t be able to be expressed this year from the league changes.
Just a small effect in comparison to the detriments it has caused globally, COVID-19 has withdrawn the NFL 2020 draft into our homes. Overstated enough but perfectly explained here, the expected changes will be an experience for everyone watching. However, still booing from their couches as NFL GM Roger Goodell steps in front of his camera, the memorable moments that arise from the draft will present themselves in different ways this year, this will be true for all fans including the Steelers.
Although each GM is allowed one technician in their homes under a specific set of rules, what couldn’t possibly go wrong? Failed communication before the clock expires or between teams as they try to trade with one another, its fun to think about it, but the personal element will still be lost cause of the pandemic. Without the times of Drew Pearson belittling Philadelphia Eagles fans in Philly or Corey Coleman appearing emotionless as the Cleveland Browns select him, surely the feeling of it all will change. Still, the walk of Steelers LB Ryan Shazier remains immortalized for the Steel Curtain and fans everywhere that is to be remembered forever.
On his way to NFL stardom, what happened before was something you never want to predict for any player and was so undeserving for the person Shazier is on & off the field. Heartbreaking, December 4th, 2017, served as an unintentionally grim day for all of the NFL. That is what made those 28 steps to the podium to introduce the Pittsburgh Steelers 1st round pick in 2018 so much more powerful.
It summarized every facet of this sport in that one minute. The dangers these players face the second they step onto these fields every week until the clock hits 00:00. The superhuman-like health they possess to pull off feats such as these. The passion they carry in whatever they do, to be able to still represent in whatever way possible they can. A glorifying moment for Shazier, it captured why the sport is nowhere near perfect, and we as fans are indebted to the entertainment they provide for us.
Rightfully, the Steelers recently placed Shazier on the “Reserve/Retired” list to still be included within the Pittsburgh organization, also allowing him to receive the all-so-controversial NFL health insurance still. An action that only seems like the right thing to do, the progress Ryan has made ever since this awe-inspiring walk is more than just encouraging.
Whether it’s expressing the pure joy of dancing with his wife at their wedding or creating “Shazier’s 50 Phenoms”, which highlights the lives of others that have faced similar life-altering circumstances, the applause hasn’t stopped since he stepped off from that stage. A tribute does excellent justice, but the story is just beginning for the impact Shazier is going to hold for people everywhere.