Alejandro Villanueva, a former Military Ranger and the only Pittsburgh Steeler seen standing during the national anthem on Sunday against the Chicago Has, told reporters he “ unintentionally” threw his teammates under the coach.
In a news conference on Mon, Villanueva said it was never area of the plan to be out on the field only and that he accidentally ran too much, according to CBS Pittsburgh .
The team had agreed , a minimum of at first, to stay in the tunnel throughout the anthem.
“ Unfortunately I threw the teammates under the bus, unintentionally, ” Villanueva said. “ Every single time I realize that picture of me ready myself I feel embarrassed. ”
He informed reporters that he had asked Steelers’ quarterback Ben Roethlisberger if can lead the team out of the canal with the captains, but the plan had been messed up due to confusion at the end of the particular tunnel, reports said.
“ When we left the locker room into that will tunnel, it was a very small region. There was a flag or some thing coming off the field so there was a bunch of Bears fans, coming from the field holding that going in front side of us, so it kind of held all of us up, ” he said.
Whilst Villanueva kept running, the group stayed back in the tunnel.
“ I produced my teammates look bad, plus that’ s my fault, plus my fault only, ” Villanueva said. “ We as a team attempted to figure it out, but certainly butchered it. ”
Since Sunday’ ersus game, sales of the lineman’ s i9000 jersey have skyrocketed, bumping this to the #1 spot on the NATIONAL FOOTBALL LEAGUE web store .
During the news conference, Villanueva said that he does not mind in case his teammates choose to take a leg or sit during the anthem, including that some of the players who have protested, have also thanked him for their service.
“ Individuals who are taking a knee are not stating anything negative about the military, they’ re not saying anything adverse about the flag, they’ re simply trying to protest that there are some injustices in America, ” Villanueva said.
In 2016, Villanueva commented on former Bay area 49er’ s quarterback Colin Kaepernick’ s initial protest, saying that whilst he doesn’ t necessarily concur that taking the knee is the best alternative and thinks Kaepernick needs to “ look at the big picture, ” this individual understands the need to try to fix the particular injustice in the country, ESPN documented.
Villanueva, a graduate from West Point, offered three tours in Afghanistan plus became an Army Ranger before signing up for the NFL in 2014, based on the Philadelphia Eagles , who first drew up him.
After being cut by the Silver eagles, Villanueva joined the Steelers’ roster in August 2014 and had their first official NFL start in Oct 2015, according to the Steelers’ website .