Sometimes it pays to be a model citizen, and that is exactly what Pittsburgh Steelers offensive tackle Alejandro Vilalnueva has been during this offseason.
When facing a Restricted Rights Free Agent (RFA) tender of just $670 thousand dollars, Villanueva didn’t miss a workout this preseason. He attended Organized Team Activities (OTAs) as well as mandatory minicamp, and with all eyes on whether he will show up to training camp or hold out, Villanueva showed and was rewarded with a 4-year deal.
Steelers come to terms with OT Al Villanueva on 4-year deal— Ed Bouchette (@EdBouchette) July 27, 2017
Financial details of the contract have yet to be released, but the deal was made official by the Steelers via their official website, and on Twitter:
Pen to paper. ✍️ #official pic.twitter.com/lW9KrZFG2P— Pittsburgh Steelers (@steelers) July 27, 2017
“I personally take pride in executing to the best of my abilities for the expectations Coach (Mike) Munchak has for myself and I think that is the same for everybody,” Villanueva told Steelers.com. “Protecting Ben is very important. He is our quarterback. He is a guy we respect, love to play for, he is a guy that inspires us, drives the offense, the team. We understand the urgency to protect him.”
“This organization is special,” said Villanueva. “It was different.”
“In other organizations, they might know you, who you are. They might have heard of you, but they don’t value you as a person. They care about me here not as a veteran, not as a football player, not as a MBA candidate. They care about me as a person.”
The next likely candidate for a new contract would be Stephon Tuitt. Stay tuned to BTSC for the latest on these stories as they develop.