Tackle Alejandro Villanueva is making the move from the Steelers to the Ravens and that means a significant change in offensive philosophies.
Villanueva said on Wednesday that learning his new playbook is a bigger challenge than switching from left to right tackle, but it is one he is embracing. That embrace is because of how much more the Ravens like to run the ball than the Steelers did.
Villanueva told reporters “it becomes very stressful” for linemen when you drop back to pass over and over again because it gives pass rushers — he used Myles Garrett as an example — a lot of chances to get into a rhythm. That makes him feel that Baltimore’s a better fit for him than it is for players at other positions.
“It was incredibly challenging that we knew we had to go with these gameplans that involved passing the ball, potentially, the entire game and not really practice or rehearse that other part of football that relieves some of that angst,” Villanueva said. “So, the mentality, when you have a balanced offense, or when you run the ball, it’s obviously better for the offensive line. I’m assuming it’s not as fun for the wide receivers, because they’re not getting all the catches. They’re making the TikToks, and they’re having fun on their social media.”
A reference to TikTok and wide receivers from a former Steeler calls to mind JuJu Smith-Schuster, whose pregame dances for social media drew negative attention from opposing players last season. While the comment seems like a swipe at his former teammate, it seems Smith-Schuster agrees as he passed on an offer from Baltimore in order to return to Pittsburgh this offseason.