Italy: Guelfi Firenze sign former ELF & South Alabama running back Xavier Johnson

The Guelfi Firenze of the Italian Football League have signed running back Xavier Johnson. For Johnson, the combination of a winning program and a new destination made the decision to head to Florence clear:

“I chose Guelfi because I wanted to impact the players and get back to that championship mindset plus Italy is beautiful”

The 5’11”, 190-pound native of Tampa, Florida played this past summer in the European League of Football rushing for 979 yards and seven touchdowns for the Hamburg Sea Devils. The 27-year-olds 97.9 rushing yards a game ranked third in the league.

Before beginning his international career, Johnson enjoyed an outstanding four-year career at South Alabama (NCAA Div. 1) who play in the Sun Belt Conference (2014-2017). He rushed for a total of 2,670 yards and 24 touchdowns while returning 51 kickoffs for 1,220 yards and two touchdowns, finishing as the school’s all-time leading rusher at the time.

Johnson projects to be a key part of the Guelfi offense which will be led by Italian quarterback Andrea Fimiani who is returning, along with adding former division one defensive back Dejion Lynch (South Eastern NCAA Div. 1), and former Dartmouth University (NCAA Div. 1) quarterback Jared Gerbino.

Watch Johnson’s NCAA highlights here:

Alex is a former NCAA and semi-pro American football player who is now located in London, where he works in digital marketing. His goal in writing for AFI is to stay involved with the game that has given him so much. Alex enjoys covering leagues and