An article published recently on mLive.com (Michigan’s leading media group) highlights the skill and work ethic demonstrated by Ahmand Johnson, Diaz Reus attorney and National Football League Player Association Certified Contract Advisor, in securing an NFL opportunity for a client—wide receiver Kendrick Ings—with an unconventional path.
Ahmand first saw Kendrick Ings during a 2011 tryout for the B.C. Lions of the Canadian Football League. Ings caught Johnson’s eye because he was fast—National Football League-fast. Ings ran unofficial times on the 40-yard dash of 4.29 and 4.31 seconds. When the B.C. Lions passed on Ings, Ahmand stepped in to represent him on a path to the NFL that was anything but typical.
Players aren’t eligible for the NFL until they’ve been out of high school for three years. With few alternatives, most NFL aspirants reach the professional ranks by playing college football for a few seasons. But that wasn’t an option Kendrick Ings wanted to pursue. Instead, he chose to take the less traveled route, first playing (without pay) for a semi-pro team in Atlanta, Georgia, and eventually landing in the Arena Football League, where he recorded 68 receptions for 997 yards and 15 touchdowns, along with 82 kick returns for 1,435 yards and 3 touchdowns for the Tampa Bay Storm.
His highlight reel drew the attention of a couple of NFL teams, and when he got a call from the Detroit Lions for a next day AM workout, he was on a flight to Detroit that night. However, that next morning he learned that because he hadn’t gone to college his paperwork needed to be cleared through the league before stepping on the field. Ahmand, after several hours on the phone with NFL headquarters, was able to sort it out and Ings was on the practice field later that day. The Lions general manager, Martin Mayhew, liked what he saw, and offered Ings a spot on the practice team.
Kendrick Ings has gotten further than most would have imagined. His particularly unorthodox path to the NFL required a lot of work and of course, talent. He had faith in himself, as well as a strong family standing behind him, and a very savvy NFL agent, Ahmand Johnson.
“I would have liked to have gone to college and gone the easy route, but I’m cool with this one,” Ings said. “I’m here.”
Read the whole story from mLive here: “No college, no problem for new Detroit Lions practice squad WR Kendrick Ings” by Justin Rogers at mLive.com.
About Ahmand Johnson. Ahmand is an NFLPA Certified Contract Advisor and attorney. A former Division I athlete, Ahmand played defensive back on Brown University’s 1999 Ivy League Championship football team. Prior to becoming an attorney, Ahmand was the co-founder of a professional sports management company, where he negotiated sports marketing and endorsement contracts on behalf of players.
He is a principle agent at DRT Sports and an attorney at Diaz Reus. Learn more about athlete representation at DRT Sports…