Pittsburgh Steelers player James Conner revealed the scary story behind his 2015 cancer diagnosis on rapper Michael Seander aka Mike Stud’s podcast. He also shared that doctors told him he had “about a week left” to live at the time.
“I get some tests done,” he said. “I got a tumor surrounding my heart, bro. My heart, I got tumors growing all around it, pressing on it…doctor told me I had about a week left. He said you got about a week if you didn’t get this treated. At the rate, it was growing.”
The Steelers running back tore his MCL in his first game of the season and months later was diagnosed with stage 2 Hodgkin’s lymphoma on Thanksgiving, after tumors in his neck and chest were discovered.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
Conner shared he was worried about breaking the news to his four brothers. “My brothers would kill for me,” he said. “My oldest one, I’m the youngest of five, and all of them would do anything in the world. My security, my protection, my right hand. How would they feel if their youngest brother wasn’t here? How would they feel if their youngest brother died?”
Conner admitted that if it wasn’t for his knee injury, he might not have gone to the doctor.
He began chemotherapy for six months, before announcing he was cancer-free in May 2016, according to Sports Illustrated. He returned to the field for Pittsburgh and had a major season, rushing for 1,092 yards in addition to 302 receiving yards with 20 touchdowns. Conner was named 2016 First Team All-ACC before he was drafted in the third round of the 2017 draft by the Steelers.