My Career Change: How Jermichael Finley Found a New Passion After the NFL

When a professional athlete’s playing days are over, many do not realize that athlete’s career in another field is often just beginning. As part of VIKTRE’s dedication to not only drive interaction between athletes and their fans, but also provide other athletes with inspiration on their own career transition, our Career team made it a priority to show how successful many athletes have been since their playing days ended in a feature called “My Career Change.”

In this installment of “My Career Change,” we interviewed former NFL tight end, Jermichael Finley.

A former third-round pick out of Texas in the 2008 NFL Draft, Finley’s career was unfortunately cut short due to a bruised spinal cord injury he suffered in the middle of the 2013 season in a game against the Cleveland Browns. In the two seasons prior, Finley racked up 55 catches for 767 yards and eight touchdowns and 61 receptions for 667 yards and two touchdowns.

Leaving the game a Super Bowl champion, Finley collected a $10 million insurance policy to help him prepare for a career after sports. As you will read in our interview, Finley has big plans for what comes next as he turns 30-years old this year.

What sport do you play?

NFL Football

What teams did you play for?

University of Texas (2006 – 2008)
Green Bay Packers (2008 – 2013)

What industry did you change careers to?

Business investment, Gyms and Physical Training

How did you get into your new career?

Finley hosting a kid’s training camp.

During my football days, I especially enjoyed the physical training aspect of the profession. I loved getting in the gym to push my body to new levels. The gym industry was an easy career for me to step into since it was already a huge part of my life unintentionally. Now I want to take my fitness experience and share it.

What was the biggest challenge you faced making your career change?

To this day I miss operating with a team. My entire life I was part of something bigger than myself. To transition from being in a group atmosphere to exploring a life as an individual has been difficult. It all falls back on me. I miss the brotherhood. I miss stepping on the field to fight with my teammates to appease the fans.

What has been your biggest accomplishment so far in your new career?

I’m currently bringing D1 (a sports training facility) to a small town outside of DFW (Dallas Fort Worth). I’m proud of the opportunity to bring a competitive level of fitness to a small community. Just taking this risk is an accomplishment.

What advice do you have for athletes making their career change?

Give yourself time to explore your passions. If you love what you do, it’s not really work! Don’t force anything. Chances are you’ll end up finding new happiness.

How can other athletes learn more about your business or your career change?

You can learn more about D1 sports on the website, and by checking them out at a number of their locations throughout the United States. You can also follow Jermichael on Twitter @JermichaelF88

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