The Philadelphia Eagles have gone and signed Alejandro Villanueva, a 6-foot-9 defensive lineman who spent the last four years as an active member of the United States Army and most recently served as a U.S. Army Ranger. The Eagles announced the big news on Monday, saying in a press release that Villanueva signed a rookie free agent deal.
The 277-pound Villanueva served a total of three tours in Afghanistan. He was most recently promoted to Captain earlier this month. The Eagles watched the 25-year-old Villanueva perform at a regional combine in Detroit last month. He last played football in 2009 for Army as a wide receiver after converting to that position before his senior season.
According to the Eagles’ release, Villanueva has earned a number of honors for his service, including the Bronze Star Medal for Valor, the Ranger Tab, the Parachutist Badge, the Bronze Star Medal for overseas service, National Defense Service Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal with Campaign Star, Global War on Terrorism Service Ribbon, Army Service Ribbon, Overseas Service Ribbon, NATO Medal, Combat Infantryman’s Badge and Expert Infantryman’s Badge.