Updated: Mon, 07 Jan 2013 19:32:31 GMT | By Michael Lopez, latino.msn.com

Latinos Presence Felt During NFL Playoffs

Hispanic players have a serious shot at making it to the Super Bowl

File photos of Aaron Hernandez & Tony Gonzalez, Ronald C. Modra, Sports Imagery, Getty Images; Mark Cunningham, Detroit Lions, Getty Images

File photos of Aaron Hernandez & Tony Gonzalez, © Ronald C. Modra/Sports Imagery/ Getty Images; Mark Cunningham, Detroit Lions, Getty Images

It’s that time of year again. The time when guys huddle around the TV, crack open endless Corona bottles and prep for the almighty Super Bowl. And though “The Big Game” may still be a few weeks away, the NFL Playoffs are in full swing and feature an impressive array of Latino talent.

Eight teams are left in the Divisional Round, with six games remaining until the Bowl. And though we lost a few Latino favorites along the way (Mark Sanchez’ Jets got wiped out last month, as did Victor Cruz’ Giants), there is still a very good chance that some Hispanic stars will walk away with championship rings.

Right now, we’re betting on Puerto Rican tight end Aaron Hernandez and the New England Patriots. As we all know, the Pats are no strangers to the Big Game. This legendary team has already conquered the Bowl three times. Aaron was with them during the 2012 showdown and did some incredible foot work on the field this season.

Of course, the Atlanta Falcons have a decent shot at making it to the Mercedes-Benz Superdome too. And that means that legendary tight end Tony Gonzalez has a chance at grabbing his first Super Bowl ring. Gonzalez has been in the NFL for over 15 years and performed some incredible plays for the Falcons and the Kansas City Chiefs. And though Atlanta has an uphill battle on their hands (they’re playing the dreaded Seahawks this Sunday), we’re hopeful that Tony will pull through.

The Denver Broncos don’t have any major Latino players per se, but there is some Hispanic talent behind-the-scenes. Defensive coordinator Jack Del Rio is a proud Mexican-American and had an impressive career on the field back in the 1980’s. Though he’s long retired from his linebacker days (playing for the Saints, Cowboys and Dolphins), Jack could still get his hands on that coveted ring. And he’s got some incredible talent to work with. Peyton Manning, Robert Ayres and Mike Adams all heed his advice on a regular basis.

And let’s not forget all of the additional Latino talent you’ll be seeing during the Big Game. With Sofia Vergara’s Kmart association and William Levy doing Pepsi promos, we imagine plenty of Hispanic celebs will pop in to those famous Super Bowl commercials too.


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