Steelers Alejandro Villanueva Wears Military Veteran’s Name On Helmet, Covering Antwon Rose Jr.

By: KDKA-TV News Staff

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — During the Steelers’ game against the Giants on Monday night, left tackle Alejandro Villanueva chose to cover up the name of Antwon Rose Jr. on the back of his helmet, displaying the name of a military veteran instead.

The name Alwyn Cashe could be seen written on Villanueva’s helmet as the Steelers played the Giants on Monday Night Football.

According to the Military Times, Cashe was killed in 2005 while serving in the Army during Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Cashe, a Sgt. 1st Class died while rescuing fellow soldiers from a burning vehicle. He was posthumously awarded the Silver Star.

After debate whether his actions warranted an upgrade, Secretary of Defense Mark Esper has agreed that he would endorse upgrading Cashe’s award to a posthumous Medal of Honor.

Before the game, the Steelers announced that the team would all wear Rose’s name on their helmets for the entirety of the 2020 season.

(Photo Credit: Pittsburgh Steelers)

Rose was 17 when he was shot and killed by a police officer in 2018.

(Photo Source: STK, Embrace Life/Facebook)

The Steelers say this year, the NFL is allowing players to wear helmet decals honoring victims of systemic racism, so they chose Antwon Rose.

Philadelphia Eagles running back and Pittsburgh native Miles Sanders also chose to wear Rose’s name on his helmet. 

(Photo Credit: Miles Sanders/Instagram)

Reactions to Villanueva’s decision were mixed.

Some mentioned that this isn’t the first time Villanueva has gone against a team decision.

In 2017, Villanueva was the lone member of the Steelers to take the field for the playing of the national anthem. 

Others said that Cashe was a hero and Villanueva should not have to defend his decision.

It’s unclear if Villanueva will continue to display Cashe’s name moving forward.