Welter just made history: She’s the NFL’s first female coach. Here are some quick facts about her.
- This week, the Arizona Cardinals appointed Jen Welter a coaching intern at its offseason training camp, where she will coach inside linebackers. This makes her the first woman to hold a coaching position of any kind in the NFL.
- Most NFL coaches have some prior experience playing football. Welter is no exception. There are several small, semiprofessional women’s football leagues in the United States. Welter played for the Dallas Diamonds of the Women’s Football Alliance, and for the Texas Revolution of the Indoor Football League. (Her position: running back.) All things considered, Welter has amassed 14 years of on-field football experience.
- Welter also played for the Dallas Dragons of the USA Rugby League, making her one of the few people to ever play more than one sport professionally (such as Bo Jackson and Deion Sanders), and one of even fewer to jump from rugby to football.
- Welter is the first female coach in NFL history, but who’s the first woman to coach in a men’s professional football league overall? Also Welter. In February, Welter was appointed the linebackers and special teams coach of the Texas Revolution.
- She’s a gold medalist. The International Federation of American Football, an organization aiming to spread the popularity of American-style football overseas, holds a world championship every four years. She’s been part of the gold-medal winning Team USA twice.
- She’s more educated than most other NFL coaches. Welter holds a Master’s degree in sports psychology, and a doctorate in psychology.