Report: Steelers Recently Worked Out Army Ranger Alejandro Villanueva

The Pittsburgh Steelers reportedly worked out a player that was recently waived by the Philadelphia Eagles. He’s a big player at that.

According to Field Yates of ESPN.com, defensive end Alejandro Villanueva, a US Army Ranger, was the player looked at by the Steelers.

Villanueva last played football in 2009 at the U.S. Military Academy prior to him serving the last four years as an active member of the Army. He served three tours in Afghanistan during that time.

The 6-foot-9, 277-pound defensive lineman played 50 snaps for the Eagles in their first three preseason games and was recently waived in the first round of cuts. He registered six total tackles and one sack during his limited playing time.

  • Steve

    This is a Hugh dude, but just cause he was in the Army Rangers, does not mean he can play football.

  • 2443scott

    he be a nice guy to put on the field goal line to block kicks

  • William Weaver

    Means they aren’t happy with our current depth or possible practice squad players. Also, being an army ranger doesn’t mean he can play football, true. But, 3 tours means he deserves atleast a tryout. #earned!!

  • steelster

    A pr stunt

  • CW

    Not so sure. The guy is an interesting PS candidate and could be developed as a 3-4 OLB for the Steelers since he’s not heavy enough to play in the base 3-4 as a defensive end.

    The Steelers have had some success in the past with developing Army and Marine veterans into defensive football players.

  • gene mann

    I agree no issue with looking at guys and especialy for the PS Sat cuts should be intresting as i expect the steelers to be looking thru others teams cuts for some help @ certain need spots

  • Burgh Ball

    #74 Terry Long believe

  • pat

    Definitely an interesting prospect have to assume being a ranger he is in shape and is very good with his hands and just think of the attitude and mentality he would bring

  • CW

    Personally I was thinking of the 50’s, 60’s and 70’s squads where there were multiple military veterans, a few of whom even got to be Pro Bowl players, but that’s good enough.

  • Steelers12328882

    How would the Steelers even use a 6ft 9in 277 player? Definitely not on defense. TE maybe?

  • CW

    The issue would be converting him to the outside linebacker position. He is too light to play defensive end for the Steelers since effectively all the DEs for the Steelers are around 10 to 20 pounds heavier, but when you factor in the extra six or seven inches he has on the next closest OLB the weight ratio makes a lot of sense for the OLB position since if he were six inches shorter he’d probably be right around Jason Woirlds’ and James Harrison’s playing weight.

  • cencalsteeler

    DE????? Shouldn’t we be bringing in corners, TE’s, and back up O lineman?

  • Steve

    Rocky Blier.

  • Steve

    At this point you take what you can get.

  • cencalsteeler

    Huh?

  • NinjaMountie

    I like it…I want to see him suit up in the last preseason game. Sua Sponte!

  • NinjaMountie

    Him and McCullers…this is all done for the pick up basketball games and side bets!!!

  • NinjaMountie

    I’ll agree with being in shape, but I’m curious as to the hands and why you think regiment would accomplish this? :)

  • Burgh Ball

    At least this guy is capable of “unleashing hell”..

  • pat

    I was in the army for awhile never a ranger but all thru basic training they teach you hand to hand combat and alot of what you see in ufc minus the kicks to be a ranger im sure they go into more depth and detail with the combat training a very very high percentage of fights end up on the ground so they teach you alot of close combat hand moves

  • Steelers12328882

    An OLB in a 3-4 defense needs to dip his shoulders, bend his hips and ankles and maintain balance in order to generate leverage. That will be tough to do with his height/weight ratio. I just watched some tape on him late in the Eagles game. He came in with about 8 mins to play. Looked pretty good, but he was playing DE in the Eagles 3-4 defense. He looks way too light though, so if he could gain 30 lbs and keep his speed he’s not a bad guy to have on the PS.

  • Taylor20

    Maybe he will bring some discipline to the locker room and straighten out Cheech and Chong

  • Steelers12328882

    Just found out he was recruited as a TE. Played DE as a freshman. Switched to LT as a sophomore and started every game at LT as a junior. His senior year(2009) he switched again to WR and had 34 rec for 522 yds and 5td.

  • patrick Mayfield

    Well if he can play LT and WR, I’d like to suggest he’s a TE.

  • NinjaMountie

    Ok, I concede your point. I know for a fact that 2nd Ranger Battalion brought in Royce Gracie and some of his brother to conduct grappling training. I can see how training like that could help some.

  • pat

    Im not at all saying he will be a good football player because of his training but he is definitely someone that would be an interesting prospect imagine him and Big Dan an the field goal block team

  • Steve

    Weed heads will always be weed heads, just ask Gordon.

  • 2443scott

    some these comments are very interesting …i am now wondering what made them bring him in for a try out ..

  • Steve

    Hard to get a decent CB at this time in the season. Giving this guy a tryout after seeing him play this past week, takes what we can get.

  • Steve

    Coaches might have seen something we didn’t.

  • Matt Manzo

    If this guy can play DE, TE, WR and T, and he’s a Ranger…..I say wrap it up, I’ll take it!

  • friendship220

    He’s up at 315 now.

  • friendship220

    I would think that the fact that he led Army with 35 catches, 5 tds means he can play football. He isn’t polished at one particular position.

  • steelster

    He could be the 3rd string qb and just throw it to himself in the redzone. A new kind of dual threat qb. And they said chip kelly was innovative. Ha!

  • Labrat0116

    Very interesting TE prospect.

    He could be a MONSTER in the Red Zone!

  • Fr33th1nk3r

    There are plenty of people in the military who toe the line and smoke pot. It’s a dumb risk in my opionion, but nonetheless one that many guys opt for.

  • Asmitty56

    With how little he played, he’s kind of at the point that he can play where ever you tell him to (or he simply can do best) Seeing as he played OT and WR in college. Given that he is 6’9″ adding 20-30 pounds shouldn’t hurt him at all. I’d say test out his blocking and see if he can play TE. He has more than enough length and has blocking experience and at lest 500 yards (I think?) last season.