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Chairman and CEO of Athletes First David Dunn

Episode 4

In this episode, Kyle Matthews is joined by David Dunn. David has represented athletes for over 25 years and has negotiated more NFL contracts than any other sports agent. Over the years, he has become one of the industry’s most prolific, influential, and respected negotiators. He has negotiated contracts for players such as Aaron Rodgers, Carson Palmer, Steve Young, Ray Lewis, Reggie Wayne, John Lunch, Matt Cassel, Ed Reed, Mark Sanchez, and Clay Matthews. David has worked with 12 Hall of Famers, 7 Heisman Trophy Winners, 6 Super Bowl MVPs, and 7 Walter Payton Men of the Year.


Tune in to this episode to hear David share the behind-the-scenes stories from major moments in NFL history, top career highlights, and the motivators that lead him to success and the challenges that came along with them.



Key Topics Discussed

  • Reinventing yourself through opportunities, risks, and fear

  • Building your story, despite being defined by who you represent

  • The fundamentals of recruiting athletes

  • Meeting a fork in the road at age 40

  • Leveraging periods of darkness to grow

  • Working on the hard things to drive your career forward


Show Notes

[00:58] – Introduction to David

[05:15] – What Does Day-to-Day Look Like Today?

[10:37] – Early Childhood

[12:00] – Getting into the Industry, Athlete Culture, and Ambitions

[23:37] – Law School & Intro to Leigh Steinberg

[25:51] – Overview of the First Couple Years in the Business

[28:45] – Recruiting Athletes Out of College – Then vs. Now

[31:42] – Establishing Credibility & The First Big Win

[35:54] – Gaining Career Momentum While Building a Family

[42:20] – Athletes First, Jerry Maguire, and the Super Bowl

[50:19] – Mentality

[57:01] – The Highs & Lows of Adversity

[59:59] – Looking Back, would you do Anything Differently?

[01:04:03] – The Transition from Being a Producer to Operating a Company

[01:07:24] – The Moment He Knew He Made it

[01:12:44] – You Still Go hard, Why?

[01:15:57] – Advice for Young Professionals & Those Looking to Take the Leap

[01:24:39] – The Why and How it’s Changed


How to Reach David Dunn

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