Best Play/Worst Play: Alejandro Villanueva

New series we’re kicking off here on Steelers Depot. To begin a recap of the Pittsburgh Steelers 2017 season, a look at the singular best and worst play from each player on the roster. If I wanted to sum up a players season in 30 seconds, these are the plays I would look at.

We’ll circle back to some of the skill positions but for today, we’re looking at the trenches and left tackle Alejandro Villanueva.

Best Play:  One-Handed Chop

I’m going to be a little cheeky with the rules here. We aren’t choosing one play alone but one technique Villanueva uses better than anyone else. His length and strength creates a nasty one-handed chop. I’ll let the clips explain. Left tackle for all of them, of course.

That’s when he is at his best. It’s hard for pass rushers to get into his pads and when they try to long-arm him and create space, he still has the ability to chop the arm down, which only a few in the league who can do.

Worst Play: Week One Sack Vs Browns

Villanueva, for whatever reason, is a notoriously slow starter and 2017 was no exception. That included giving up a sack in Week One’s victory over the Cleveland Browns. One he shouldn’t have given up. Here, the RDE, Carl Nassib,  tries to run the edge. Instead of just keeping his base and using his length to seal him upfield, he loses his base entirely. The end, reading that, and knowing he won’t win the edge, counters inside. Villanueva doesn’t mirror him and tries to pivot around to no avail. Down goes Ben Roethlisberger.

Just an ugly play all around. He must to build more consistency in his game.

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