Two California men have broken a unique barrier in sports: This week, the L.A. Rams announced Quinton Peron and Napolean Jinnies were joining the team's cheerleading squad, the first men to ever be an official part of an NFL dance team.
"I thought, 'Why not me? Why can't I do this?'" Peron told Good Morning America. And called my friend and I asked her when auditions were for the Rams and she told me Sunday [March 11] and I showed up."
The two celebrated the news on social media.
"I’m so humbled and honored to be one of the first male dancers on a professional dance team!" posted Peron on Instagram, using the hashtag #boyscandancetoo
The Indianapolis Colts and Baltimore Ravens have male stuntmen, but Peron and Jinnies are the first male dancers for a professional NFL team. They will round out the Rams' regular team of 40 cheerleaders, playing both home and away games.
Gender aside, making the squad was an arduous ordeal.
"The [tryouts] were unlike anything I've ever been to. I'm used to getting a call after or an email," Jinnies said. "This one was about three weeks long and we had a bunch of rehearsals in between and an extensive interview process, but it was really humbling and amazing to be invited every time you came back."
Rams cheerleader captain Emily Leibert made it clear the two classically trained dancers were chosen for their skills, not just because they were men.
"They really just fit the bill to be a Los Angeles Rams cheerleader. They are intelligent, they are eloquent, they are more than qualified to be ambassadors out in the community. They bring so much energy and there's something so magnetic about their performance, you really can't take your eyes off them."