Pittsburgh Steelers offensive lineman and decorated Army veteran Alejandro Villanueva became an instant hero to many fans of the NFL when he became the lone player to stand for the national anthem.
Villanueva made his move before Sunday’s game against the Chicago Bears. And those fans are responding to his act with their wallets.
The former Army Ranger, Villanueva was the only Steeler to break from the team’s orders and come out of the tunnel Sunday in Chicago to stand for “The Star-Spangled Banner.”
On Fanatics.com, sales of Villanueva’s jersey skyrocketed, launching up to the third highest-seller in Pittsburgh Steelers jersey as of just before 8 PM Eastern time, behind only a custom Steelers jersey and Antonio Brown’s jersey.
Villanueva’s jersey also jumped into the top sellers around the league, and as of 7:45 PM EST trailed only Marshawn Lynch, Derek Carr, Carson Wentz, Brown, and Aaron Rodgers in sales.
The rest of his team remained in the locker room as the national anthem was played.
Villanueva’s decision surprised the rest of his teammates. One reason the Steelers decided stay off the field during the nation anthem was because Villanueva didn’t want to be singled out while he stood.
“We thought we were all in attention with the same agreement, obviously,” linebacker James Harrison told Penn Live. “But I guess we weren’t.”
Villanueva was critical of Colin Kaepernick’s anthem protest in August of 2016, when he said:
“I don’t know if the most effective way is to sit down during the national anthem with a country that’s providing you freedom, providing you $16 million a year … when there are black minorities that are dying in Iraq and Afghanistan for less than $20,000 a year.”
It is important to note that the Steelers lost that game, and it is no accident. You cannot start the game with negative thoughts and win. They doomed themselves from the very beginning.
These players, following the example of Colin Kaepernick, are acting on hate. Does that affect the outcome in their playing ability?
You bet it does!
When Kaepernick was playing, his game went downhill fast after his lazy 3 minute antic before each game. Was he thinking positive thoughts? Of course not! He was not only thinking hate, he was trying to send a message of hate. It affected his game playing ability. Attitude is everything.
I taught sales for years. In fact, I advised the government of the small country of Grenada on the subject. The first place you start is the beginning of the day. A sales manager that starts the day with an exciting and upbeat message can double sales. A sales manager who begins the day with negative remarks will ALWAYS destroy the numbers for the day. ALWAYS folks!
When the Steelers started the game on a negative note, they doomed themselves. It will happen very time. When they were supposed to be thinking about how thankful they are for this great country that had affords them the achievements that they enjoy, they were instead focused on anger. It was a given that they would lose.
Roger Goodell, has articulated a league policy that allows for players to protest during the National Anthem.
“It’s one of those things where I think we have to understand that there are people that have different viewpoints,” Goodell said. “The national anthem is a special moment to me. It’s a point of pride. But we also have to understand the other side, that people do have rights and we want to respect those.”
No, Roger, the field is no place for players to express their political viewpoints. They are employees. You have blown it. The boycott is spreading fast and if you do not get control of your employees, you are going to have a catastrophic mess on your hands,
The boycott will grow immensely after the knot-head move by the Steelers…the boycott grows as $$$ shrinks.
How far can the NFL fall?
Sign up to get alerts from Joe!