They have been one of the most dominant forces in the WWE over the past year, but The Shield could well be coming to an end as an entity.
Or at least that's what has been teased over the past couple of months. From Roman Reigns eliminating both of his compatriots—alongside plenty of others—right through to Seth Rollins walking out during the middle of the match, all the signs have pointed towards The Shield breaking up.
However, instead of breaking up the group and having them go their separate ways, there is one other option that could just turn out to be even better.
Keep them together—but turn them.
It would have seemed implausible six months ago that turning The Shield face would give them extra shelf life. However, circumstances have changed, which could very well help them thrive for plenty of time yet.
It all seemed to start at the Royal Rumble in fact, when Roman Reigns created that little bit of history. By setting the record for most eliminations from a single person, he seemed to thrust himself—and The Shield, to an extent—firmly into the spotlight.
They instantly went from a trio who were routinely dishing out beatings to a team with genuine intrigue. The stories began to surface that they may split, and we began to see the odd fraction on WWE TV shows. It seems that the modern-day wrestling fan is won over by an act that has fought hard to garner some of the spotlight—that is almost exactly how The Shield got to this point.
Reigns' popularity surged, and so did The Shield's. His devastating spear was combined with a huge array of impressive moves. The flying kick on the edge of the apron was pretty impressive, but his patented Superman Punch brought huge cheers from the crowd. Face or heel, if you can perform inside the ring, you are going to be well-liked. We even had "Roman Reigns" chants breaking out at WWE TV shows—for a guy who could still be considered a rookie with the company, that is good going.
Seth Rollins—the guy who had almost faded into the background with the group—then started to step up, too. He became more and more noticeable in matches involving The Shield to the point where he is now one of the most entertaining guys on the roster.
Even Dean Ambrose delivers inside the ring on a regular basis. The Shield were slowly turning into everyone's favorite team within the WWE—even though they were still heel. That is because they can entertain (Dolph Ziggler's morph into a babyface happened in the same way).
But the real launch for the group was their feud with The Wyatt Family. Bray Wyatt, Erick Rowan and Luke Harper are true heels: They are twisted, demonic and simply thrive from the boos the crowd give them.
Up against the Wyatt Family, The Shield almost inevitably become the face team. The crowd were already starting to root for them by the time they locked horns at the Elimination Chamber, and that night only endeared The Shield to WWE fans even more.
By the end of that feud, they were routinely getting cheered at every single event. And now, heading towards WrestleMania, they appear to be cutting promos that could suggest a face turn may well be on the horizon. Ambrose—the supposedly sadistic "crazy guy" of the group—is looking distinctly happier and cheerier in and around the ring, almost acting like a face.
Reigns is the same: He can afford the odd smile nowadays, something that was impossible when he first arrived with the group as their resident monster. They are having a bit of back-and-forth with Kane at the moment and indeed stand above one of the biggest heels in the company on SmackDown this week.
The possibilities are almost endless if you turn The Shield face. You could resume that epic rivalry with The Wyatt Family, for starters. You could have them rebelling against The Authority. There are so many options available.
It would certainly be a wise move to make the turn happen at WrestleMania. The Shield have gone from an average heel staple to one of the most enjoyable and entertaining groups there is. Turn them face, WWE. You won't regret it.