things that matter

Meet Some of the Latino Football Players Who Made NFL History

Tony Duffy / Getty

Before Ron Rivera became the second Latino head coach to lead a team to the Super Bowl, he was one of several Latino trailblazers in the NFL. But he wasn’t the only one! Lots of Latinos were under the radar for decades. Now’s the perfect time to look back at Latinos who made NFL history.

Tom Fears: From Guadalajara to the NFL Hall of Fame.

Fears was born in Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico to a Mexican mother and American father. Fears, who played college ball at UCLA, was a standout wide receiver for the Los Angeles Rams from 1948-1956. He won the 1951 NFL championship and became the first Mexican-American enshrined into the NFL Hall of Fame in 1970.

Jim Plunkett: Tom Flores wasn’t the only Latino Raider to win rings.

Jim Plunkett was the Raiders’ star quarterback under the tutelage of Tom Flores. The Mexican-American won the Heisman Trophy at Stanford and was the 1971 No. 1 overall pick in the NFL Draft. Plunkett, who was named MVP of Super Bowl XV, embraced his status as a role model. He told ESPN: “I’m proud to be Hispanic. It’s who I am. And if it helps kids in our community around the country set goals, even better.”

Joe Kapp: “The Toughest Chicano.”

Throwback Thursday! #joekapp #minnesota #vikings #purplepeopleeaters #vintage #quarterback #tough #skol

A photo posted by damonkster (@damonkster) on

Kapp replaced celebrated quarterback Fran Tarkenton with the Minnesota Vikings and guided the team to its first ever playoff appearance in 1968. The following season, Kapp led the Vikings to Super Bowl IV, where they fell to the Chiefs. In 1970, Kapp graced the cover of Sports Illustrated with a caption that described him in three words: “The Toughest Chicano.”

Martin Gramatica: Super Bowl-winning kicker.

Martin Gramatica was the first Argentinian to win the Vince Lombardi trophy after his Tampa Bay Buccaneers defeated the Raiders in Super Bowl XXXVII. Gramatica also made it to the Pro Bowl in 2001, where he represented the Bucs on team NFC.

Wait! Martin was not the only Gramatica to kick in the NFL.

Guillermo “Bill” Gramatica, the younger brother of Martin, spent four seasons in the NFL with the Cardinals, Giants and Dolphins. Unfortunately, he’ll always be remembered as the kicker who got injured while celebrating.

Ouch. That celebration didn’t just hurt his pride – it led to a torn ACL.

READ: The Latino Announcers for the Carolina Panthers are Insane and Everyone Loves them For It

Ted Hendricks: The Guatemalan with four rings.

Ted Hendricks was a defensive force for the Baltimore Colts from 1969-1973. The linebacker won Super Bowl V with the Colts and later captured three more with the Raiders. Hendricks, who was born to a Guatemalan mother and American father, was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1990.

Steve Van Buren: Honduras’ punishing halfback.

Steve Van Buren was a five-time first-team All-Pro with the Philadelphia Eagles in the 1940s. Van Buren, who was born in Honduras, won three consecutive rushing titles from 1947-49 and went into the Hall of Fame in 1965. Van Buren’s regular season record of 18 touchdowns with the Eagles wasn’t broken until 2011, when LaSean McCoy 20 touchdowns.

READ: The Son of Mexican Field Workers, Tom Flores Became the First Latino Coach to Win a Super Bowl

Efren Herrera: From soccer player to Super Bowl champ.

Herrera, who was born in Guadalajara, Mexico, moved to the US as a young boy. He didn’t know anything about football until the football coach from his high school, La Puente High, saw him kicking a basketball into a soccer net. Herrera joined the football team as a kicker and eventually earned a football scholarship to UCLA. Herrera played for several NFL teams in the ’70s and ’80s, but his career year was 1978. Herrera helped the Dallas Cowboys win Super Bowl XII and was also named to the Pro Bowl.

Anthony Muñoz: The king of the trenches.

Anthony Muñoz is regarded as arguably the greatest offensive lineman in NFL history. He spent 13 seasons with the Cincinnati Bengals, where he earned 11 Pro Bowl appearances and was named to nine first-team All-Pro squads. Muñoz is a member of the 1980s All-Decade team and went into the Hall of Fame in 1998.

Riverboat Ron: From Super Bowl shuffle to dabbing in the big game.

Ron Rivera has a Super Bowl ring from his days as a ferocious linebacker for the Chicago Bears. Rivera, who is of Puerto Rican and Mexican descent, spent nine seasons with the Bears and won it all in 1985 with arguably the greatest team in NFL history.

Did you know there were so many Latinos in the NFL? Click on the share button below to send to your friends!

Paid Promoted Stories

These Mexican Women Have Found an Incredible Way to Fight Back Against Cat-Callers and You'll Never Guess How

things that matter

These Mexican Women Have Found an Incredible Way to Fight Back Against Cat-Callers and You’ll Never Guess How

Las hijas de Violencia / Facebook

Walking along the sidewalk can become a total catcall creep show, but women in Mexico City are fighting back. They are taking practical jokes and punk rock to the next level, giving the men who shout at them a quick scare and some uncomfortable public shame.

Las Hijas de Violencia are a Mexican cat-caller’s worst nightmare.

12647332_598051987010154_7094205697455786835_n
Credit: Las hijas de Violencia / Facebook

They’re a feminist group in Mexico City that fights back against sexual harassment. And those masks make them that much more frightening when you have the “chance” to meet them.

If they hear you on the street harassing them or other women, you will be met with a gun…full of confetti!

10259767_324322767716412_3186647222465232800_n
Credit: Las hijas de Violencia / Facebook

WATCH: Do You Consider Yourself a Latina Feminist?

Seriously, these women just grab their guns…

Didnt See It Coming
Credit: AJ+ / YouTube

And shoot.

Shooting
Credit: AJ+ / YouTube

¡Toma güey!

These. Girls.

giphy-2
Credit: Orange is the New Black / Netflix / Yosub / Giphy

How many of these men do you think have pissed their pants in fear?

But that’s not all. After shooting you with confetti, they give you a personal punk rock show to bring a little public shame your way.

Punk Rock
Credit: AJ+ / YouTube

?What you’ve done to me is called harassment. If you do this to me this way, I will respond.? #SquadGoals

READ: Here’s Some Girl Power Art to Make You Feel Strong and Beautiful…because You Are

“We must respond,” Ana Beatriz, member of La Hijas de Violence told AJ+. “If, by us responding [to catcalls], we can encourage more women to do the same, it’s ideal.”

giphy-3
Credit: American Idol / FOX / americanidol / Tumblr

So, if you see a scared cat-caller next time you’re in Mexico City, you can thank these chicas for showing them what’s up.

More Shooting
Credit: AJ+ / YouTube

Check out their “Sexista Punk” anthem below:

Credit: Las hijas de Violencia / Vimeo

(H/T: AJ+)

What has been your worst cat-caller experience and how did you handle it? Share this story by tapping that share button below and get all your friends in on the Sexista Punk movement!