Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker Ryan Shazier, 25, underwent spinal stabilization surgery Wednesday night to repair an injury he sustained during a play this week against the Cincinnati Bengals, the team announced Thursday.

Shazier had the surgical procedure at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center facility where he received extensive testing and further treatment. Longtime team physicians David Okonkwo and Joseph Maroon, who developed the NFL’s ImPACT concussion testing program, operated on Shazier, ESPN reported.

The 25-year-old linebacker will need months to recover before making a return to football activity, NFL Insider Ian Rapoport reported on TNF's "First Look." Shazier suffered the injury when he collided headfirst into Cincinnati Bengals receiver Josh Malone's thigh during the first quarter of the Steelers' 23-20 win Monday night.

"From what I am told by several sources informed of this situation, the recovery that would be associated with the spinal stabilization surgery would take months, three or four or maybe even five or six, just before Ryan Shazier even consider playing football again or his future," Rapoport said. "But understand, this is a very serious situation for Ryan Shazier. We don't know much, if anything, about his football playing future. We do know that his 2017 season is over, and he remains hospitalized in Pittsburgh as he recovers from spinal stabilization surgery."

Coach Mike Tomlin, who visited Shazier in the hospital Monday night, recounted the incident that injured the linebacker.

"It was painful to kind of, get on that plane last night, but that's life," Tomlin told reporters. "We realize and understand that he's in really good hands and is getting expert medical care, and he also challenged us to move on with what it is we need to move on [to]. Not only is he mentally tough, but he's a guy that's spiritually in a great place, and I know that's an asset for he and his family."

Shazier’s fiancé Michelle Rodriguez took to social media giving thanks to everyone who showed support during the surgery.

"Just wanted to thank EVERYONE for all the prayers and support for Ryan. So sorry I haven’t been answering phone calls and texts at this time. Please just keep Ryan in your prayers. This is honestly more than football. You guys honestly don’t know how much this means to us and our families. The love and support that has been flooded our way is something that we are truly grateful for.

We THANK YOU! God is TRULY able!! #prayfor50 #shalieve#50 #steelers #faith #family," she wrote on Instagram. 

Shazier also posted a message to his fans on Twitter Tuesday.

Ryan Shazier Ryan Shazier played college football at Ohio State. Photo: Getty Images