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Regina’s Amanda Ruller becomes first woman on Seattle Seahawks coaching staff

Amanda Ruller always knew she wanted to reach the pinnacle of professional football. This month, she’s living it.

Ruller has been hitting the NFL field this month as an assistant running back coach for the Seattle Seahawks as part of the league’s Bill Walsh Diversity Fellowship Program. In doing this job, she is setting history, becoming the first woman ever on the Seahawks coaching staff.

Growing up in Regina, Ruller played several different sports, from track and field to Olympic lifting and of course, football. But it was her love for her for the Roughriders and the sport that eventually drew her to pursue coaching.

“To me football was poetry in motion,” Ruller said. “When I fell in love with the game, that’s when I knew I wanted to play and I wouldn’t take no for an answer.”

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Ruller eventually started to work as a football coach alongside several CFL athletes. With some work with the University of Regina under her belt, she went to Ontario to work with McMaster University’s football team last year.

While being a woman in the sport can be tough at times, Ruller says she holds her head high.

“I was [often] told no, over and over, just based on who I am. I was told to my face…you can’t make it to the CFL, you can’t make it to the NFL…every single time it made me grind harder, it made me love the game more.”

Her time at McMaster helped lead her back home to Saskatchewan, landing a coaching gig with the Saskatchewan Roughriders as a part of the CFL’s Women in Football Program.


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First female offensive coach in the CFL strengthening Rider’s game


First female offensive coach in the CFL strengthening Rider’s game – May 22, 2022

She spent last month with the Riders during their training camp in Saskatoon as an assistant running back coach. Her work on the field drew praise from Riders head coach Craig Dickenson.

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“She’s been everything we expected and more,” Dickenson said at training camp in May. “She’s a fantastic coach, an outstanding person and she really brought a lot of good energy to the room.”

“[Dickenson] welcomed me in. For not one second did he judge me based on my gender,” Ruller said.

“He was such a great coach to work right besides. He had so much trust and intention in who I am to help that team develop during training camp, let me plan some individual drills and execute them, so I do thank him for that because he helped me develop as a coach going forward.”

Ruller has now been working with the Seahawks for a few weeks, another opportunity born out of hard work and effort. After paying out of her own pockets to attend the NFL Combine back in March, she was able to meet several coaches and managers, leading to opportunities in the league.

Eventually, the Seahawks coaching opportunity emerged and Ruller hasn’t looked back since.

This month, she has been coaching through Seattle’s minicamps. She’s been doing everything from planning drills to breaking down film and everything in between. This summer, she’ll continue coaching through training camp, up to their second preseason game in August.

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You’ve got to be the first one in and the last to leave…I just try to do my work, do as much as I can, ask for every task and opportunity and that’s what I’ve got to do to be the best coach.”

Ruller hopes to be able to stay on in the NFL after this coaching job with the Seahawks. But if not, she plans to head back to coach at McMaster.

For now, she says she’s just soaking it all in.

“Right now I think those larger goals will come if I set those intentions. Right now, just every day try to be better and better and better, then those larger goals will come.”

Ruller also knows being a trailblazer in the sport comes with responsibility. She wants other women and girls in sport to know not to give up.

“Don’t take no for an answer, don’t let anybody tell you you’re not worth it, that you can’t go forward with your dreams…keep going.”

© 2022 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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