The NFL is largely dominated by athletes from North America, but over the years, multiple international players have made the roster of the best teams in the league. This trend is growing too, with more people from all over the world getting more interested in watching American football. The sport has been expanding thanks to international games, and while there aren’t currently any NFL games planned for Africa, viewership across the continent is up.

Most recently, the NFL Africa Camp 2022 gave fans the opportunity to show their skills, learn more about the sport and gain exposure. Thanks to events like this, the number of African players reaching the NFL is growing more than ever. With more players from all over the world, the NFL is getting more exciting than ever and this season has been great to watch so far. You can watch all of the games online and find the  latest odds for NFL games at Betway. Over the years, lots of top athletes from Africa have played in the NFL. Here are some of the best.

Obed Ariri

Obed Ariri was a soccer player who made the change to the NFL. The Nigerian-born Ariri was scouted by Clemson and offered a soccer scholarship after the college’s scout saw him play in his home country. He enrolled at Clemson in 1977 and was later contacted by the football team’s head coach as they needed a placekicker.

Although he had never kicked a football before, he soon nailed every kick in practice, leading to his scholarship being changed to football. He was hugely popular at Clemson and soon drew the attention of NFL teams and was entered into the seventh round of the draft. He signed for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers later in his career, where he set the record for field goals and points.

Ariri encouraged another Nigerian soccer player, Donald Igwebuike to start kicking football too, and he was also later signed by the Buccaneers. Igwebuike would also go on to set records, and both men were inducted into the NFL hall of fame.

Christian Okoye

Nicknamed the Nigerian Nightmare, Okoye was born in 1961 and came to the US from Nigeria at 21 years old. He didn’t start playing football until he turned 23, but had a natural gift for the game and a huge amount of athleticism. He turned to football after being turned down by Nigeria for track and field, although he wasn’t initially a fan of the game. He used his strength and speed to excel as a running back and was drafted in the second round by the Kansas City Chiefs.

Playing in the NFL, Okoye went on the have an extremely impressive career, leading the league in rushing yards across several seasons. While his career was cut short due to injuries, he managed to be inducted into the hall of fame and is well-loved by many fans of the Chiefs thanks to his exciting running style and ability to powerfully break tackles.

Ezekiel Ansah

Ezekiel “Ziggy” Ansah has been described as one of the most influential Africans to play in the NFL. The Ghanaian-born defensive end came to the US in 2004, having been invited by a missionary that he met in Ghana. At the time, he knew nothing about football land and had only ever played soccer and basketball. He originally played basketball in the US and continued when he first went to college. It was only in his sophomore year that he actually first played football.

Although his first few seasons playing college football were sporadic, he started getting consistent games after a teammate was injured and soon posted some excellent stats. In his 2012 season, he had the best red zone defense stats in the country and top ten stats for most defensive metrics. He was picked up by the Detroit Lions in the first round of the draft who saw his athleticism too good to pass up, despite his raw skills.