Ryan Shazier has no plans to retire from the NFL, the Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker saying it is his dream to play football again.
Shazier addressed the media on Wednesday for the first time since suffering a serious spinal injury to provide an update regarding his ongoing recovery.
He walked to the podium with a cane and first thanked those who have supported him. Shazier said he is doing "a lot better than expected" and is taking his rehabilitation "one day at a time" with the goal of eventually making his return to the football field.
"My dream is to come back and play football again," Shazier said. "I have that in the back of my mind during rehab and I'm trying to stay positive every single day.
"I would be a liar if I said there haven't been any bad days… but if there were 100 days, probably… two of them are bad."
Shazier required spinal stabilisation surgery after suffering a spinal contusion in a game with the Cincinnati Bengals on December 4.
He acknowledged that the sport comes with risks but is not worried about the possibility of being re-injured if he gets the opportunity to play again.
"I understand football is a dangerous game, things can happen," he added. "I accepted that in the moment. I've accepted what happened to me and kept pushing forward."
The Steelers placed Shazier on the Reserve/Physically Unable to Perform list but converted $8.26million of the linebacker's $8.718m base salary for 2018 into a signing bonus last month.
Shazier, 25, will not be back in action until next season at the earliest but is expected to be seen on the sidelines helping his coaches and team-mates in the meantime.
|Rams v Chiefs moved to LA due to Mexico City field conditions|
|Bell fails to report to Steelers, will sit out rest of season|
|Hue Jackson joins Bengals staff as ´special assistant´|
|Giants too good for 49ers in crunch time|
|Rams WR Kupp out for season with torn ACL|
|Saints sign Marshall following Bryant injury|
|Norman says Washington home crowds ´just don´t really care´|
|Titans stun Patriots, Browns upset Falcons|
|Browns´ Chubb relishes record-breaking performance: It definitely is very special|
|Fitzgerald overtakes Owens in career receiving yards|
|Brees leapfrogs Favre on all-time list for touchdown passes|
|Jones fastest in NFL to reach 10,000 receiving yards|
|Mahomes breaks Chiefs´ single-season TD record|
|The Sunday Seven - 7 Key Opta facts for NFL Week 10|
|Shanahan discusses Giants-49ers matchup amid possible postponement|
|Gronkowski, Michel ´questionable´ for Pats|
|Panthers safety Reid puzzled by ejection|
|Roethlisberger helps Steelers thrash Panthers|
|This Week in U.S. Sports: Dez Bryant finds a home, Bryce Harper turns down big offer|
|Manning focused on much-needed Giants win|
|Eagles´ Jenkins: Defending champions relish being underdogs again|
|Cowboys running back Elliott calls matchup with Eagles a must-win game|
|Saints sign Bryant to one-year contract|
|Atlanta Falcons swoop to sign Bruce Irvin|
|Niners QB Mullens to keep starting role against Giants|
|Aikman calls for ´complete overhaul´ of Cowboys|
|Titans too good for Cowboys|
|Packers WR Allison dealing with ´pretty big injury´|
|Arians would only come out of retirement for Browns job|
|Bell bids farewell to Florida in cryptic tweet|
|Brady, Belichick laud Patriots defense as Rodgers comes up short|
|McVay takes blame as Rams run ends in Saints defeat|
|Brady and Patriots beat Rodgers´ Packers|
|Texans, Chargers extend winning streaks|
|Falcons WR Jones finally ends touchdown drought|
|Rodgers v Brady: Packers star finally has superior support in battle of modern greats|
|Thielen v Megatron - How NFL receiving history makers compare|
|Pursuing Peyton: How does Mahomes´ 2018 stack up against Manning´s record-breaking 2013?|
|Shula fails to match father, Spagnuolo suffers in St. Louis - Hue Jackson & the worst coaches in NFL|
|Mullens helps 49ers past Raiders|
|Jackson discusses Browns firing, says he would´ve turned offense around|
|Jets to be very active in NFL offseason|
|This Week in U.S. Sports: Red Sox win World Series while Bama is No. 1|
|Beathard backup as Mullens starts against Raiders|
|I´m not getting the job done, admits Winston|
|Osweiler hoping to remain Dolphins´ starting QB when Tannehill returns|
|J.J. Watt surprising himself with return to Defensive Player of Year form|
|High-flying Rams bring in Fowler from Jaguars|
|Lions send Tate to Eagles|
|Texans acquire WR Thomas from Broncos|
|Rodgers inspires me - Brady|
|NFL announces four London games for 2019|
|Patriots grind out win over Bills|
|Browns fire coach Hue Jackson & offensive coordinator Todd Haley|
|Saints overcome Vikings for sixth straight win|
|Rams remain perfect after win over Packers|
|´It was a must-win´ - Long delighted with Eagles´ victory|
|Marrone shoulders responsibility for Jags quartet´s brush with the law|
|Eagles kicker Elliott: Wembley pitch was ´beat up´|
|Jags suffer London loss as Wentz throws three TDs in Eagles win|
|Bears´ Khalil Mack ruled out of Jets game with ankle injury|
|Wade to pursue NFL career after rugby union retirement|
|Goodell: London Super Bowl a possibility if city lands NFL franchise|
|Jaguars quartet detained in London ahead of Eagles clash|
|Vikings´ Griffen set to play against Saints after missing five games|
|Bears pass rusher Mack questionable for Jets game|
|Texans WR Will Fuller out for season with torn ACL|
|Jets RB Powell expected to ´recover fully´ from neck injury|
|Watson leads Texans past Dolphins|
|This Week in U.S. Sports: Dodgers on the brink in World Series|