NFL launches professional development program for players

March 3, 2023 GMT
FILE - Kansas City Chiefs guard Trey Smith (65) celebrates after defeating the Philadelphia Eagles in the NFL Super Bowl 57 football game, Sunday, Feb. 12, 2023, in Glendale, Ariz. While the best college players showcase their skills at this week’s annual scouting combine, the NFL launched a professional development program Friday, March 3, to provide current and former players opportunities to prepare for their future after football. The program kicks off next week in Los Angeles with 18 players, including Kansas City Chiefs guard Trey Smith. (AP Photo/Steve Luciano, File)
FILE - Kansas City Chiefs guard Trey Smith (65) celebrates after defeating the Philadelphia Eagles in the NFL Super Bowl 57 football game, Sunday, Feb. 12, 2023, in Glendale, Ariz. While the best college players showcase their skills at this week’s annual scouting combine, the NFL launched a professional development program Friday, March 3, to provide current and former players opportunities to prepare for their future after football. The program kicks off next week in Los Angeles with 18 players, including Kansas City Chiefs guard Trey Smith. (AP Photo/Steve Luciano, File)

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — While the best college players showcase their skills at this week’s annual scouting combine, the NFL launched a professional development program Friday to provide current and former players opportunities to prepare for their future after football.

NFL Career Tours gives players exclusive access to major organizations to learn about various career opportunities and network with industry leaders. Sixty men will participate in the program this month to gain behind-the-scenes experience in entertainment, sports business, and the music industry.

The NFL has partnered with the Fifth Season and Hidden Empire film groups, Nike, and Interscope Records.

The program kicks off next week in Los Angeles with 18 players, including Kansas City Chiefs guard Trey Smith, going to work with Fifth Season and Hidden Empire to gain an all-access look into all facets of the entertainment industry, including acting, casting for roles, directing, financing, producing, and distributing movies.

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“The opportunity to better myself outside football from a professional standpoint, I think it’s extremely important,” Smith said on the AP Pro Football Podcast.

A group of 16 players will be at Nike World Headquarters in Oregon on March 13-14 for a look at the sports business industry, including product development, marketing, and branding.

Sixteen others will go to Interscope Records in Los Angeles on March 20-21. They’ll learn all aspects of the music industry, including becoming an artist, managing an artist, promoting the music, operating a record label, and envisioning the money needed to be successful.

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