PITTSBURGH - UPDATE:
Villanueva says he regrets being the lone Steelers player to stand for the anthem.
"When everyone sees an image of me by myself, everybody thinks the team and the Steelers are not behind me, and that's absolutely wrong," he said. "It's quite the opposite."
Villanueva apologized to his teammates, head coach Mike Tomlin and the franchise, saying he felt "embarrassed" by photos showing him standing alone and appearing to break the image of unity the team wanted to project.
Pittsburgh Steelers offensive lineman Alejandro Villanueva made headlines Sunday afternoon when he was the only member of the Pittsburgh Steelers to stand on the field for the national anthem.
Since that moment, the lineman now has the best-selling jersey in the NFL.
Villanueva, a former Army Ranger who earned a Bronze Star and served three tours in Afghanistan, was the only Steelers player who came outside the tunnel during the national anthem Sunday afternoon.
Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin previously said the team collectively decided not to be on the sideline during the song.
Pictures and video of the 29-year-old West Point graduate standing alone, with his hand on his heart, quickly spread across social media.
According to ESPN, a spokesman for Fanatics, confirmed that over the past 24 hours, Villanueva's gear has been ordered more than that of any other NFL player.
Officials with Fanatics, which runs the NFL’s official online store, said the gear includes jerseys and name T-shirts.
The offensive lineman beat out four quarterbacks for the top spot: Tom Brady, Carson Wentz, Dak Prescott and Aaron Rodgers.
Villanueva jerseys are available in men’s and women’s sizes.
ESPN's Darren Rovell said this is the first time he can remember seeing an offensive lineman's jersey available in women's sizes.
Jerseys and T-shirts of Alejandro Villanueva are now available in men's & women's cuts.— Darren Rovell (@darrenrovell) September 25, 2017
First time I've seen that for an offensive lineman pic.twitter.com/EIfozzLdEE
“I was looking for 100 percent participation. We were (going to) be respectful of our football team,” Tomlin said after the game.
Nearly 200 NFL players didn’t stand for the national anthem during Week 3. Three teams -- the Steelers, Tennessee Titans and Seattle Seahawks -- didn’t come to the sideline until after the anthem had finished.
© 2017 Cox Media Group.
Lone Steelers player to stand for anthem now has NFL's best-selling jersey
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