The Carolina Panthers signed three-time Pro Bowl safety Jairus Byrd on Tuesday with starter Kurt Coleman set to miss multiple games with a sprained knee.
Byrd was a three-time Pro Bowl selection early in his career with the Buffalo Bills. He signed a blockbuster six-year deal with the New Orleans Saints in 2014 worth up to $54 million.
But Byrd suffered a major knee injury during practice four games into the 2014 season and never totally returned to form. Scheduled to make $7.8 million in salary and bonuses this season, he was released in March and remained unsigned until Tuesday.
“I’m tired of the cameras in my face all the time,” Villanueva said after a 29-6 win Sunday (via USA Today). “It’s crazy. It’s sad, because we had the Baltimore Ravens-Pittsburgh Steelers game and everybody is focused on the pregame procedures.”
Villanueva served three tours in Afghanistan and was awarded a Bronze Star for valor, so it’s no surprise he has become the poster boy for those upset with players demonstrating during the anthem. However, Villanueva has no interest in playing that role.
“To use me as a tool to push an agenda and push message is completely unacceptable,” he said. “I respect every single player in the NFL. Every single citizen has their rights. I am not into the Cheap Barcelona Jerseys politics of the game. I’m just a football player.”
Villanueva said last week he felt “embarrassed” about being the Cheap Authentic Jerseys From China lone Steeler on the field in Week 3 at Chicago and that “this national anthem ordeal has sort of been out of control.”