Fall 2021 SS Magazine

Former Super Bowl champion safety James Ihedigbo ordained in ministry

It’s been less than four months since James Ihedigbo announced his retirement from the NFL.

But the 34-year-old safety has been busy in his post-football career, revealing this week that he’s been ordained as an elder for the Houston-headquartered Reflections of Christ’s Kingdom World Outreach International (R.O.C.K.) ministry. The R.O.C.K. calls itself a three-continent church community committed to spreading the Gospel.

“Like we say in the NFL after you get signed, the work is just beginning!” Ihedigbo wrote on Instagram Tuesday. “I look forward to continuing to serve the Lord.”

Ihedigbo was quick to mention “the Lord Jesus Christ” upon announcing his retirement from the NFL. And he indicated on the Sports Spectrum podcast in June that he’d already begun living out his faith after football. Born of Nigerian immigrants, he had a “powerful encounter with the Lord” after his father’s death and noted involvement with HOPE Africa, a foundation dedicated to aiding African students.

Undrafted in 2007, Ihedigbo played the first four years of his pro career with the New York Jets. He then spent 2011-16 with four different teams: the New England Patriots, Baltimore Ravens, Detroit Lions and Buffalo Bills. His career years may have come in 2013-14, when he combined for 172 tackles and seven interceptions with the Ravens and Lions. He was also part of Baltimore’s Super Bowl-winning secondary in 2012.

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