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Pittsburgh Steelers Sign First Round Pick Ryan Shazier to a Four-Year Contract

June 5th, 2014 at 9:53 PM
By Mark Mihalko

The Pittsburgh Steelers came to terms with their first round pick, linebacker Ryan Shazier, on a four-year contract agreement (with a fifth year option). The athletic linebacker with incredible speed will receive a fully guaranteed salary in the $9 million range with a $5 million signing bonus.

'CIMG0202' photo (c) 2005, Acererak - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.0/
Shazier was one of the more interesting linebacker prospects that the Steelers brought in for a visit during the pre-draft process. Athletic and smart, he has been a consistent team-leader on defense and has the look of a player that can make an impact in the NFL.

At 6-1, 237-pounds, Shazier put on a show at his Pro Day, recording a blazing 4.38 40-yard dash and a solid 42-inch vertical. More importantly, these demonstrations of raw athleticism are backed up by production on the field, where he shows tremendous closing speed, quickness off the edge as a blitzer, fluidity, and a relentless motor with high football acumen.  While Shazier is a versatile linebacker, he does lack bulk and may struggle to consistently set the edge against the run in the NFL. Teams will also have to question his overaggressive streak that led to blown assignments and penalties at the college level, as well as the history of nagging injuries that kept him off the field at times throughout his career.

By signing Shazier, the Steelers now have six of their nine draft choices under contract for the 2014 season.

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Tags: Football, NFL, Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh Steelers, Ryan Shazier

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