Photos from Day 2 of practice for the 2016 Women's World Football Games. Photos by Lauren Levenson (New Orleans Saints Photos).
After a long day of practice in the New Orleans Saints indoor facility, the women particpating in the Women's World Football Games gathered Thursday to listen to Jen Welter speak about being the first female coach in the NFL.
Welter had been coaching alongside the women most of the day.
"First of all, just being here, I want to thank the New Orleans Saints for opening their doors to the women of football," Welter said. "It's such a huge testament to what a great organization the Saints are and how much belief they have in this game and the community as a whole."
Welter spoke about her start in football and how she fought for the sport she loved, even when people told her women didn't belong.
"I got the opportunity to coach guys on a NFL field and now to be here coaching women," Welter said. "It really tells me that there has never been a better time in the history of this game to be a woman in football."
Welter also spoke about how she commits to trying things for all women, not just herself. She said she thinks the importance of Sarah Thomas, the first female NFL official, and herself is that women now can see themselves being part of the NFL.
"What a powerful time for women in football to literally be able to look to a NFL sideline and see a place for themselves within the game, that are the players, that are the play-makers, that are the decision-makers, that just changes it," Welter said. "It changes the respect level that guys have for women, not just in football but in life. "
After speaking, Welter took time speaking with women who wanted to share their story and thank her for what she has done for women in the sport.
"To all those little girls out there, it's find your field of dreams," Welter said. "If men can take coaching from a female in the NFL, there's kind of nothing women can't do."