NFL, IFAF continue expansion of Global Flag Football Ambassadors Team in advance of Germany, Mexico games

The Global ambassador program is set to expand the international advancement of flag football with the addition of Jakob Johnson, Equanimeous St. Brown and Sebastian Vollmer among current superstar ambassadors.

The National Football League (NFL) and the International Federation of American Football (IFAF) today announced the fourth team of Global Flag Football Ambassadors to amplify and support the long-term growth of the game worldwide.

Jakob Johnson, Equanimeous St. Brown and Sebastian Vollmer are among the latest to join an all-star team of men and women, including current American and flag football players, Legends, coaches and officials, as ambassadors who will work together to further raise the profile and promote the unique values of one of the world’s fastest-growing sports.

The Flag Football Ambassadors team – first announced ahead of the NFL’s Kickoff Weekend earlier this year – supports the combined global efforts of the NFL and IFAF to increase awareness, interest and participation in flag football internationally and drive forward the development of the game.

Last month, the NFL announced the transformation of the Pro Bowl, renaming the tentpole event as the Pro Bowl Games. Taking place in Las Vegas in 2023, the week-long celebration of player skills will feature an exciting new format that spotlights flag football. In addition to the AFC vs. NFC game on Sunday, the Pro Bowl Games will integrate flag throughout the week, including the Play Football Opening Night and NFL FLAG Championships, which was created in partnership with RCX Sports and will feature the top girls and boys youth flag teams from across the country and around the world.

Currently played by men, women, boys and girls of all ages in more than 100 countries around the world, flag football is poised for even greater expansion as the cornerstone of the NFL’s domestic and international participation and development strategies. Momentum is growing behind the sport following its debut at the World Games in Birmingham, Alabama, earlier this year with IFAF preparing to launch the biggest-ever cycle of elite international flag competition, including full continental representation for the first time in 2023. Flag is a fast-paced, non-contact, creative and highly skilled format that benefits from being easily accessible and inclusive, making it the perfect vehicle to attract new players, accelerate growth and promote the message of football for all.

The newest members of the Global Flag Football Ambassador team are:

Nausicaa Dell’Orto – Captain of the Italian women’s national flag football team.
Jakob Johnson – Las Vegas Raiders fullback, born in Stuttgart, Germany.
Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah – Cleveland Browns linebacker, of Ghanaian descent through his father.
Mona Stevens – Quarterback of the German women’s national flag football team.
Equanimeous St. Brown – Chicago Bears wide receiver who, like his brother Amon-Ra, is a German national who speaks fluent German and French, thanks to his German-born mother.
Sebastian Vollmer – NFL Legend, former New England Patriots tackle, born in Kaarst, Germany.

The global appeal of these international athletes highlights the scope and ambition of the group to grow the game worldwide but also points to the impact international players have on the NFL itself. For instance, Los Angeles Rams defensive back Taylor Rapp was born in the United States to his mother, who is from Shanghai, China, and father, who is Canadian born. Liz Sowers is currently the head coach of the women’s flag football program at Ottawa University in Canada.

Among the previously announced ambassadors with international ties:

Osi Umenyiora, the first British-born player to win a Super Bowl, was born in London to Nigerian parents and now works to raise the profile of the game in Europe and Africa.
Amon-Ra St. Brown, Detroit Lions wide receiver who is a German national who speaks fluent German and French, thanks to his German-born mother.

Desiree Abrams, who made a name for herself on the international stage, including as a member of the referee team to oversee flag football at the World Games, as well as the IFAF World Flag Football Championships in 2018 and 2021, and the IFAF Women’s World Championship in 2022. In 2016, she founded the National Women’s Football Officials Association that seeks to accelerate opportunities for female referees in football.

Diana Flores is the starting quarterback for the Mexico women’s team and won the gold at the 2022 World Games 2022 by defeating the USA. She has been a member of Mexico’s national team since 2014 when she was 16 years old.

Liz Sowers is the head coach of the women’s flag football team at Ottawa University, where she won the NAIA championships in her first year in 2021.
Andrea Castillo won the bronze medal at the 2022 World Games for the Panama women’s flag football team.

Luke Zahradka is the quarterback of the Italian national flag football team.

Italy’s women’s flag football captain and IFAF athlete representative Nausicaa Dell’Orto:

“As someone who had to fight for my right to play football when I was a teenage cheerleader, it’s amazing to be part of this movement, helping power the incredible growth of flag football among women and girls worldwide. I am passionate about flag as a way to empower and build confidence among young women. It’s a sport that gives opportunity to everyone, where differences can become superpowers. Flag football gave me my voice and today I am proud to use it as part of this all-star team, helping to spread our message of inclusion on a global scale.”

LA Raiders fullback Jakob Johnson:

“I am extremely excited and appreciative to serve as a Global Flag Football Ambassador. I am very proud to be counted among the Germans who have been fortunate enough to play in the NFL, and I look forward to helping football grow internationally. This program will create opportunities for kids in Germany and beyond to learn and enjoy our great game.”

Cleveland Browns linebacker Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah:

“It’s my extreme honor to be named as one of the Global Flag Football Ambassadors. There has been much energy, time and resources dedicated to the expansion of the sport we love, football. But more importantly, the emphasis has been placed on teaching the principles of life, through the lens of football. Once these principles — discipline, accountability, leadership and sacrifice — are understood, football will be utilized as a global avenue to develop the minds of youth everywhere.”

Bears wide receiver Equanimeous St. Brown:

“I am honored to be named a Global Ambassador of Flag Football. The timing comes along with my extreme excitement for there to be an NFL game in Germany. There is such a great supportive fan base in that country, and it will make for a great playing environment. It will be great for those fans to get to see an NFL game in person for the first time.”

Mona Stevens, quarterback of the German women’s national flag football team:

“I am delighted to be named a Global Flag Football Ambassador alongside some of the greatest players from the NFL and American football worldwide. Flag football in Germany is thriving and I can’t wait to showcase it this weekend with my teammates in front of an audience of millions during the NFL regular-season game between the Buccaneers and the Seahawks in Munich. It is such an exciting platform for flag football and will undoubtedly have a massive impact on the sport by helping to further raise its profile in Germany and across Europe. This is just the beginning and I know the sport will only continue to grow.”

NFL Legend Sebastian Vollmer:

“Flag football is a great way to get young people to experience playing this game for the first time. It is so good to see children across Germany playing flag football ahead of the very first NFL game in this country, and especially for some of them to have the chance to play against their peers from around the world at the Pro Bowl Games in Las Vegas next year.”

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