TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Football is back and so are the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
But this time, they’re playing the game on wheels.
There are four competitive tournaments across the nation, including one in Tampa.
“It’s wheelchair football, it’s very similar to able-bodied football,” Tampa Bay Buccaneers player Ryan Lindstrom said. “7 on 7, one-hand touch.”
“It’s fast-paced,” he continued. “We’re out here having fun.”
Eight teams competed in two divisions.
“Amazing because you know when you get into an accident and have to be in the wheelchair, you think the loss of competitive sport is gone forever,” Dallas Cowboys player Aaron Summerill said.
For players like Summerill, it’s more than just throwing a football.
“Finding wheelchair football, wheelchair basketball, has been a lifesaver for many of us because it gives us something to look forward to, some type of competition to move forward with life and be competitive again,” he explained.
The USA Wheelchair Football League allows adults with disabilities the unique opportunity to play a competitive, fast-paced, team sport.
“It means the world,” Hillsborough County Adaptive Sports Supervisor Mary Cales said. “They work twice a week for two hours at each practice, and they’re working on offense, defense, the atmosphere is great.”
“They’re really enjoying each other,” she continued. “It’s a solid team.”
Players here in Tampa got the opportunity to compete representing the Buccaneers.
“It’s so exciting when they put on that helmet with the Buccaneers logo on it,” Cale said. “They feel like the world is their oyster; it’s so great.”
For the results of this weekend’s tournament, click here.