The Baltimore Ravens have signed former Pittsburgh Steelers tackle Alejandro Villanueva to a two-year contract, the team announced on Tuesday.
Villanueva, 32, visited with the Ravens before the draft, but the team reportedly waited to sign him until after the Monday deadline that means free agent additions no longer impact the compensatory draft pick formula, meaning the wait will both help Baltimore and hurt Pittsburgh’s chances of maximizing their odds of gaining compensatory selections.
The two-year contract is worth a total of $14 million and has $8 million in guarantees, NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reports. Villanueva earned $6.6 million from the Steelers in 2020 in the last year of a four-year contract he signed with the team in 2017.
The Ravens had a need at tackle since trading starter Orlando Brown Jr. to the Chiefs on April 23. Brown had expressed a desire to play left tackle and the Ravens have Ronnie Stanley slated to return to that spot after missing the end of the 2020 season with an ankle injury.
Villanueva has been the Steelers’ primary left tackle since taking over for an injured Kelvin Beachum mid-season in 2015 and has started 100 consecutive games for the team. He was selected to the Pro Bowl following the 2017 and 2018 seasons.
He’ll be expected to play right tackle for the Ravens, who got a first-round pick from Chiefs for Brown, but chose Minnesota wide receiver Rashod Bateman and Penn State edge rusher Odafe Oweh with their two first-round pick, preserving a need at tackle.
The Steelers are expected to replace Villanueva by moving Chukwuma Okorafor from right tackle to left, with Zach Banner returning from knee surgery to reclaim the right tackle spot. Pittsburgh also drafted Texas A&M tackle Dan Moore Jr. with their first of two fourth-round picks in 2021 NFL Draft.
The Steelers originally acquired Villanueva after he was released by the Philadelphia Eagles in August 2014. The Eagles had been working out the former Army Ranger and West Point alum at defensive end, but the Steelers moved him to tackle, giving him a year on the practice squad to adjust to the position. The 6-foot-9, Villanueva played tight end, tackle and wide receiver at Army.