Tyron Carrier graduated from the University of Houston in 2012 as the Cougars' all-time leader in total yardage, but a knee injury kept him from being drafted by the NFL.
"You know, being at home all that time, and not being able to play football, seeing football go on that whole year, it kinda wears you down," said Carrier.
After spending some time on the practice squad of the Montreal Alouettes in the CFL, he's back in Texas looking to keep his football career going as a Wichita Falls Nighthawk.
"Given this opportunity, it feels great to be back out there playing again."
Scott Smith played defensive end at Texas Tech.
He was with the St. Louis Rams for all of training camp as an undrafted free agent, but was part of the final round of cuts.
"I was there for the preseason, for the five months, so I mean I'm just hungry and I want to get back," said Smith.
Both players say the level of play with the Nighthawks compares well to the high-level college and pro teams they've been on.
"It's really not that different," Carrier said. "You know, at practice we got a lot of good guys and so we all compete every day. You know, it's the same thing."
Smith agreed that it's "Very similar. It's all the same, high level of competition. [Nighthawks GM] Jerry [Hughes] has got a lot of good guys in here, so it's pretty much the same. Football's football."
The Nighthawks play their inaugural home game Sunday, February 17th at 3 p.m. at Memorial Stadium against the North Texas Stampede.
All tickets are $10, and include a chance to win a meet-and-greet with NFL star Tim Tebow, who will be on hand.
Hughes told Newschannel 6 this week the team has pre-sold over 4,000 tickets already, and expects a strong walk-up crowd.