Former NFL defensive end and two-time Super Bowl Champion Osi Umenyiora has spent the better part of the last two years working to help give Nigerian athletes a chance to play in the NFL through the league’s International Player Pathway Program. This year, Umenyiora was extremely successful as six Nigerians have earned training camp roster spots, including David Ebuka Agoha who signed with the Las Vegas Raiders.
According to AmericanFootballInternational.com (AFI), Agoha is a 6’5” and 245-pound former basketball star who played professionally in the Nigerian Premier League. On the gridiron, he was a standout as a defensive end at the NFL Africa camp which was hosted by Umenyiora.
AFI dove into Agoha’s background in January, which can be seen below:
Hailing from Bende in Abia State, Nigeria, Agoha was first noticed by Educational Basketball founders and brothers Olutobi and Iseolupo Adepitan while playing in Nigeria’s Premier Basketball League for the Invaders of Ado Ekiti.
Agoha posted his highlights online following the roundup of the season and was soon after contacted by the Adepitan brothers who felt his unbelievable mix of size and athleticism could lead to a future in the NFL.
Agoha was one of the most anticipated, and youngest, athletes invited to the London combine. His absence [due to visa issues] was a disappointment to fans, but he will now have months of training and a college Pro Day to prove his athleticism belongs in the NFL, and a high-performance training facility in Arizona (OLP) to show him how to do it.
Eight players in total earned roster spots through the NFL’s IPP Program this year, six of them being from Nigeria which is something the former Super Bowl champ takes a lot of pride in.
“To see these fantastic young Nigerian men achieve their dream to be on an NFL roster is incredibly exciting, and I am proud of how each one of them have worked incredibly hard to earn this moment,” Umenyiora said in a statement. “I cannot wait to see how they develop next season and in the years to come, and know that everyone in Nigeria will be following their progress with pride.”
The international players will not count towards their respective team’s 90-man training camp rosters, meaning the Raiders and seven other teams involved won’t have to cut someone else to make some room. The players will all have a chance to make the 53-man roster at the end of camp, but if they don’t, they can be added to the practice squad and won’t count toward the practice squad player limit.
Keep an eye out for Agoha this August during the preseason games.
In other Raiders links:
- Byron Young film breakdown: the former Alabama defensive tackle and third-round pick can be a good run-stopper in the trenches for the Silver and Black.
- Michael Mayer lands in perfect spot: “Josh McDaniels will maximize the new Raiders tight end’s tremendous talent,” writes S&BP’s Ray Aspuria.
- Nesta Jade Silvera looking to hone it all in: “I had a top 30 visit with the Raiders earlier this month and just got a good connection with a couple of the staff,” via Raiders digital reporter Levi Edwards. “... I’m just blessed to be a Raider.”
- Charles Woodson praises Nate Hobbs: “I like Hobbs [because] Hobbs got the dog in him,” Woodson said on the “BLACK OUT Podcast.” “You need more Hobbs. … Hobbs is a guy who can get the football. He’s a tough guy – I think he dealt with some injuries last year to his hand.”