The Super Bowl is the main annual sporting event in the United States. In the last decade, interest for this game has grown significantly in Latin America, where millions of viewers, especially in Mexico and Brazil, follow every detail of the highly anticipated match.
This year, the Kansas City Chiefs defeated the Philadelphia Eagles in Super Bowl LVII, played in Glendale, Arizona. There was Latino blood in both team rosters and rookie running back Isaiah Pacheco, of Puerto Rican descent, lifted the Vince Lombardi trophy. What other Latinos won it before?
The first Mexican-born player to be drafted into the NFL. In 1945, Fears, a split end, joined the Los Angeles Rams franchise.
In total, he won three championships, one as a player with the Rams in 1951, playing a key role with an impressive 60-yard run in the closing seconds of the match, and two as part of the coaching staff of the Green Bay Packers, in 1962 and 1965. In 1970, he was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
The son of Mexican parents, Flores became the first Latino coach to join the Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio. He won four Super Bowls in his illustrious career and has secured a place in history, since, along with Mike Ditka, they are the only ones who have won the championship as a player, as an assistant coach and as a main coach.
Flores won the Super Bowl playing for the Kansas City Chiefs; he was again successful in Super Bowl XI as an assistant coach for the Oakland Raiders, and lifted two trophies as their main coach, at Super Bowls XV and XVIII.
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Kicker Herrera entered the NFL record books as the first Mexican to win a Super Bowl. He was born in Guadalajara, and moved with his family to the United States when he was 15.
He played in Super Bowl XII with the Dallas Cowboys, defeating the Denver Broncos. He scored two field goals and three conversions in that game.
He then moved to other teams like the Lions, the Seahawks, the Bills and the Raiders. In his extensive career, he scored 116 field goals in 171 attempts, in addition to 256 conversions.
Raúl Allegre enjoyed a 9-year career as a professional football player in the NFL, between 1983 and 1991, wearing the colors of the Baltimore Colts, the NY Giants and the NY Jets / Photo: Paul Burnett | AP Photo
Another renowned Mexican kicker, with two Super Bowl rings, is Raúl Allegre. He was born in Torreón, México and in 1977 came to the United States, where he played college football at the University of Texas at Austin.
Between 1986 and 1990, he played for the New York Giants, and won Super Bowls XXI and XXV with them. In his nine NFL seasons, Allegre had 73.6% effectiveness, achieving 137 field goals in 186 attempts and scoring 183 conversions.
Gramática has been the only Argentinian-born player to appear in a Super Bowl. His contribution was important for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to win Super Bowl XXXVII, against the Oakland Raiders in 2003. Gramática scored two field goals and six conversions in that match, as the Buccaneers won 48-21.
In his ten seasons in the NFL, Gramática also played for Indianapolis, Dallas and New Orleans. He appeared in 109 games and scored 155 field goals, plus 228 conversions.
STEVE VAN BUREN
Van Buren was born in Honduras to American parents, and lived there until the age of seven. Between 1944 and 1951, he was a running back for the Philadelphia Eagles, with whom he won two NFL titles. He had great strength and speed, so much so that, in four of his eight seasons, he led the NFL for rushing yards.
His performance was tremendously important for the Eagles’ victory in the championship match against the Chicago Cardinals in 1948. One year later, in the title match against the Los Angeles Rams, Van Buren set a playoff record, rushing 196 yards. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1965.
Hendricks’s mother was from Guatemala, the birth country of this terrific linebacker, who played in the NFL for 15 seasons and won four Super Bowls.
Hendricks played for the Baltimore Colts that won Super Bowl V. He then shone with the Raiders in Super Bowls XI, XV and XVIII. In 1990, he was inducted into the Hall of Fame.