TAMPA (FOX 13) - The Tampa Bay Inferno's all-female football team plays just as tough as any of their male counterparts, whether it's running, blocking, or tackling.
"Women have the same potential as a guy. I feel like we go out here we push as hard as the guys,” said linebacker Candi Thompson. “We love the sport as much as the guys. We work hard like the guys. There's no difference between a woman and a man in my eyes when it comes to football.”
Thompson and fellow linebacker Tynequia Roberts take on different jobs by day. But at night, they are trading their work clothes for jerseys.
Both were always drawn to the game.
"I just always watched it. I grew up in high school going to the games and everything," offered Thompson.
"My flag football coach from college, he was like, 'Oh no you can't play that sport; you're too girly for that, you can't do it.' But once he saw some highlights and actually saw us playing, then he said 'Oh.' I think it was a shock to him," said Roberts.
The idea of tackle football was intimidating at first.
"What I thought at that time, it wasn't for me. I'm really not a physical person. I don't really want to be hit nor hit someone for free," said Roberts.
"It was a challenge for me because it wasn't like something that my body was used to, but I fell in love with it immediately. I knew this was going to be a long-term thing for me,” Thompson continued.
Roberts is supported by her biggest fan, her 2-year-old son.
"He does little drills with me in the house and he tries to tackle me and things like that because he's seen me play so many times,” Roberts smiled.
They have a whole new generation seeing the game and the players differently.
"Little boys are always the funniest because they say girls can't play football and you show them and they're like ‘Oh my god, you're awesome,’" said Thompson.
They are looking for a few good trailblazers to join the team. The team is holding tryouts on September 23 and October 21.
"You don't have to have any experience,” Thompson added. “You don't have to be a player who's played flag or anything like that. You can come out here with zero experience and our coaches are going to teach you and find the best place for you on this team.”
LINK: For more information, http://www.tbinferno.com/