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Steelers vs. Giants: Ryan Shazier says "as of right now, I'm fine" after right knee injury

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Shazier's "boo-boo" doesn't necessarily rule him out for Saturday game against the Giants, but it does shine some light onto the Steelers' outstanding budding depth at inside linebacker.

Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Ryan Shazier limped around a bit after tackling Steelers running back Le'Veon Bell.

And with it, Steeler Nation gasped and refused to breathe.

It exhaled a little bit when Steelers coach Mike Tomlin said it was just a "boo-boo," with or without a hint of a patronizing tone. It may be able to take a full breath now, but that isn't certain either.

He told Beaver County Times' Chris Bradford Monday, "as of right now, I'm fine." He suggested he'll be ready to go in the Steelers' first preseason game, 7:30 p.m. ET Saturday, Aug, 9, at the New York Giants.

Those boo-boos will happen, and there isn't a dire need to get Shazier on the field. In fact, given the depth the team has at inside linebacker - both Sean Spence and Vince Williams have looked outstanding so far in camp - ensuring all of them can get work wouldn't be the worst thing that's ever happened to this defense.

That may be the message to send all the inside linebackers now. There are only so many spots, and the team is set with its starters. Here's your opportunity to prove your worth.

It wouldn't seem likely most Steelers starters will play more than two series at the absolute most Saturday, but the back-ups on this team are more intriguing than they have been in many years. If Shazier plays two series, you're looking at extensive time for both Spence and Williams, and along with Terence Garvin, Arthur Moats and Howard Jones on the outside, the combinations of linebackers the Steelers can use throughout this game makes for an interesting product.

Perhaps it's not as exciting as seeing the Steelers' first round pick lace up his cleats in the first unofficial game action of the year, but the deep players on this roster will play big roles this season.