Alejandro Villanueva ‘won’t miss football at all’ in retirement, says NFL ‘a bit like a circus’

Former Pittsburgh Steelers offensive tackle Alejandro Villanueva recently announced his retirement from football after seven seasons in the NFL, the last of which was in 2021 as a member of the Baltimore Ravens.

While he became a Pro Bowler at left tackle, Villanueva wore many hats before. The Steelers first saw him as a defensive end. He had also been a hot prospect coming out of college. He even played catcher during his army football career.

But he is still a man who has worn many hats in life. He was by no means a lifelong footballer, as other players might describe themselves. After all, he had already had quite a long career, considering his age, as an Army Ranger even before he was on an NFL practice squad. And he had some interesting comments about his time in the league, speaking to Ron Cook and Joe Starkey on The Cook & Joe Show for 93.7 The Fan on Thursday.

“I’m not going to miss football at all,” he said. “Football was fair, how can I leave the army? The army is what I always miss, the life of being in uniform, “hurry up and wait”, complaining 24/7 7. It’s a dream come true”.

Throughout his playing days, Villanueva regularly referenced his time in the armed forces, and he frequently continued to engage with his military background, helping veterans at every opportunity, for example.

“Playing in the NFL with the same people was kind of like the military, so it was an easy transition out of the military, but football, the football world and the NFL, that always got to me. seemed a bit circus,” he admitted, and you can probably imagine some of the things he might be referring to.

Villanueva unwittingly became the center of attention in 2017 when he appeared on the field before a Week 3 game against the Chicago Bears with his hand on his heart to salute the American flag during the National anthem. The team had agreed to stay in the tunnel in protest due to the political environment at the time, but it was agreed that Villanueva could be up front.

The problem was that due to the pre-game chaos and traffic, the team got stuck in the tunnel, and it created the impression that he was breaking ranks. He ended up dragging himself to the media over the next week to explain in excruciating detail what happened, and since then his relationship with the media has changed.

Still, I find his comments interesting. “I will miss all my teammates, the coaches, the interactions, the complaints, but not so much the football itself,” he said. “I never thought I was going to play in the NFL. I just wanted to be able to cheat on a coach for a year so I could afford trade school.”

He managed to go through business school while playing. He is now ready for life after football, a healthy and fit 33-year-old millionaire entrepreneur who has veteran and celebrity status, accolades in several areas and a good head on his shoulders.

But how much will he watch football from now on? It doesn’t look like he’s going to be regularly tuning in to Steelers games every Sunday, or anything like that. In fact, it seems that it seems rather boring to him.

“I enjoyed, obviously, the locker room and being with my friends, but the game of football ping pong is much more entertaining, in my opinion, than sitting there and suffering, hoping you don’t end up not in 3rd and 10 twenty times a game,” he said.

Luckily, we find the game more fun than that, and so do you, I imagine, which is why you’re here. I’m not sure these Villanueva comments will sit too well among a bunch of diehard football fans, but nonetheless, I wish him well as he moves on to the next chapter of his life.

Comments are closed.