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Giants Now: Osi Umenyiora, Mathias Kiwanuka help lead first NFL events in Africa

Giants Now: Osi Umenyiora, Mathias Kiwanuka help lead first NFL events in Africa

Osi Umenyiora, Mathias Kiwanuka help lead first official NFL events in Africa

The NFL will host its first official events to take place in Africa beginning June 21 in Ghana. The week of activities – NFL Africa: The Touchdown – includes a talent identification camp, a fan event and a flag football clinic, and underscores the NFL’s commitment to develop more ways to serve its growing fan base across the continent.

With more than 100 players of African descent (born in Africa or first generation born in the U.S.), the League will highlight the contributions of its African players, introduce the sport to the next generation of fans and look to activate in other African countries in the future.

Current NFL players will take part on-site including Seattle Seahawks Uchenna Nwosu (Nigeria), Houston Texans Ogbonnia Okoronkwo (Nigeria), Cleveland Browns Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah (Ghana), and Indianapolis Colts Kwity Paye (Liberia), as well as NFL Legends Mathias Kiwanuka (Uganda), Roman Oben (Cameroon), and Osi Umenyiora (Nigeria).

As the League looks to further identify and develop more talent in Africa, the NFL will host its first NFL Africa Camp, featuring 40 players from across Africa. The camp will take place on June 21 and 22 with players that were selected after participating in regional camps led by Osi Umenyiora, NFL Legend and two-time Super Bowl winning defensive end with the New York Giants.

“This is a truly remarkable initiative,” said Umenyiora. “This camp is not only giving opportunities to great African athletes, it is also highlighting the incredible African athletes already in the NFL. The positive impact of this cannot be overstated.”

Umenyiora established The Uprise, a football program in Nigeria that has held regional camps in Ghana, Nigeria, and South Africa in recent months. Players that stood out were invited to the NFL’s upcoming camp, which will be held in Ghana.

“We look forward to hosting our first camp in Ghana and will look to activate in Nigeria and other African countries in the future,” said Damani Leech, NFL Chief Operating Officer of International. “We want to provide an opportunity for the next generation of African prospects to showcase and further develop their talent. As we continue to look for ways to strengthen the pipeline of international players, we hope this camp, and future camps, provide a path for aspiring players from across the continent. Top talent from the camp could be invited to participate in International Combines, the International Player Pathway program, and for those athletes ages 16 to 19, there’s the opportunity to attend the NFL Academy in London.”