Former Steelers LB Ryan Shazier picks rival AFC North team to win Super Bowl LVIII
Ryan Shazier, a starting linebacker for the Pittsburgh Steelers from 2014-2019, suffered a career-ending spinal injury in 2017 against the Cincinnati Bengals and never played a down again. He remained close with the Steelers as they kept him on the active roster for the next two seasons despite being inactive.
However, he recently went against them. Appearing on "NFL on Fox," Shazier predicted that their rivals, the Baltimore Ravens, would win the AFC North division. He went a step further and said that if the Ravens reach the Super Bowl, they will win it.
"This one is going to hurt me to say this, but I think that Baltimore is probably going to win the AFC North," Shazier said. "The Steelers aren't. They are the best team in the AFC because of how the offense and defense work together.
"They're doing a really good job of adding Zay Flowers and Odell Beckham into the passing game. And to me, it's kind of crazy how they use Isaiah, I know Mark Andrews is out, but they still effectively use their tight end.
"If the Ravens make it to the Super Bowl, they're going to win a Super Bowl, like no ifs, ands or buts about it. And the reason I say that is because teams that don't play Lamar (Jackson) and the Ravens on a regular basis, they don't know how to handle them."
Shazier was a two-time Pro Bowler (2016 and 2017). He racked up 299 combined tackles, seven sacks, seven interceptions, 25 pass deflections, seven forced fumbles and three fumble recoveries in his career.
What are the Steelers and Ravens' Super Bowl odds?
The Baltimore Ravens (9-3) are in first place in the AFC North and hold the No. 1 seed in the AFC.
The Steelers (7-4) are tied for second in the AFC North.
The Ravens have the fourth-highest odds to win the Super Bowl. Their odds are set at +700 (via FanDuel.) The Steelers have the 13th-highest odds at +7000.
Things can change quickly in the NFL with late-season injuries, teams going on late runs and upsets happening. The entire AFC North would have been playoff teams if the season ended a few weeks ago. That changed when both Joe Burrow and Deshaun Watson suffered season-ending injuries.
If you use any of the above quotes, please credit Ryan Shazier and "NFL on Fox," and H/T Sportskeeda.