Jersey sales of Pittsburgh Steelers offensive tackle Alejandro Villanueva skyrocketed after Sunday's game in which the West Point grad was the lone Steelers player to stand for the national anthem.
President Donald Trump called players who protest during the national anthem“sons of bitches” and that they should be fired, prior to Sunday's games.
Steelers coach Mike Tomlin told his players that they must be unified – either they would be in agreement of what to do on the field, or no one from the team would be on the field."
Since they couldn’t come to a consensus, Pittsburgh players and coaches were supposed to stay in the locker room, though it was later amended to the team’s tunnel near the Soldier Field turf because of timing.
As the rest of his teammates stood in the shadows, Villanueva was about 20 feet in front of them, his hand over his heart, during the playing of the anthem. His teammates were
Villanueva already received a bit of notoriety thanks to a commercial with USAA, the financial services company for military members and their families, that was played over a trillion times during last season. Villanueva actually later admitted that the experience with the commercial was "weird."
The 29-year-old is a West Point graduate and former Army Ranger who served three tours of duty in Afghanistan before returning to football (he played at Army) in 2014, signing first with the