Being a sports agent can be a rewarding career for individuals with a passion for sports. As an agent, you don’t just negotiate contracts for your clients but you also help athletes plan their careers.
Although most leagues don’t require a sports agent to have a degree in law, sports management, or business administration, the National Football League (NFL) requires you to have a college degree to begin your career as an NFL agent.
A successful NFL agent needs strong communication skills to recruit and develop personal relationships with prospective clients. It’s also essential to possess excellent negotiation skills to help clients maximize their earnings potential with both contracts and endorsement deals. A sports agent should also have a good understanding of contracts and be knowledgeable about league rules.
How to become a successful NFL sports agent
The life of an agent is not all glamour, and it’s a results-oriented profession that rewards individuals who are adept at managing the careers of the athletes they represent. If you’re serious about pursuing your dreams of becoming an NFL agent, here are six steps to start your incredible journey towards a career in the professional sports industry.
1. Know the sport
A sports agent must be knowledgeable about professional football and the league’s rules to effectively manage the careers of their clients. If you don’t have a good understanding of the game of football, it will be impossible to relate to your clients and provide the advice needed for long-term success.
A successful NFL agent will have a firm understanding of the ins and outs of the sport, the rules, and the league.
2. Take the Athlete Management Online Course
To be successful, all sports agents need proper training. Aspiring NFL agents have the option of enrolling in an eight-week Athlete Management Online Course, which is a great way to learn how to become an agent and network with sports industry professionals.
The course teaches students:
- how to recruit and sign clients,
- negotiate contracts,
- legal and financial issues,
- marketing and endorsements,
- registration requirements,
- compliance with rules and regulations,
- personal services counseling,
- business ethics and conflicts of interest, and
- post-career counseling
However, without a college degree, your career options will be limited.
3. Get a college degree
If you’re attending college and have an interest in becoming a sports agent, earning a degree in sports administration or a related field will be your best career path. A sports management degree will help you understand:
- sports law and management,
- player management,
- league and team equity issues,
- sports ethics,
- economics, and
A degree can lead to sports internship opportunities for valuable experience. Having a degree will also allow you to pursue graduate programs (Masters of Law), which is also a requirement to become a certified NFL agent.
4. Become licensed and certified
Sports agents are required by some states to register and obtain a license to practice their profession. Also, the NFL player association has guidelines that require the league to certify all NFL agents.
The process to receive certification includes:
- having a bachelor’s degree,
- passing a background check,
- payment of application fees, and
- successful completion of an examination
While these requirements may seem challenging, they’re meant to protect athletes from incompetent, poorly trained sports agents.
5. Scout and recruit amateur athletes
To be a successful NFL agent, you need to identify and recruit prospective athletes. Once you have the proper training and have obtained a license, the next step is to scout amateur athletes whom you feel have the skills and talents to compete at the professional level.
As an aspiring agent, you must build a client base by successfully recruiting and signing your first athlete, and this will help attract additional clients by gaining a reputation as an agent that can help players plan their careers and maximize their earnings potential.
6. Manage the career of an athlete
Now that you’ve signed your first client, the hard work begins. An NFL agent is responsible for the daily operations of advising and managing the career of the athlete they represent. Besides attending to personal and professional issues your client might have, you must also promote your clients to potential business partners.
A sports agent who’s successful at helping their client make the right career moves, while also obtaining lucrative appearance fees and endorsement deals, will attract other clients and be on their way to building a profitable career.
Time to get started
If you’re interested in pursuing a career as an NFL agent, Jobs In Sports has you covered. From available sports internships to current sports job openings with your favorite teams and organizations, you’re a click away from starting the career of a lifetime. Join today to gain unlimited access to America’s most up-to-date sports job board. Period.