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Toyota's pre-Super Bowl ad asks what it means to be a dad

Toyota's "To Be a Dad" Super Bowl ad
Toyota

One of the first plays in the pre-Super Bowl ad blitz is by Toyota. The car maker is going straight for the heart with their online ad campaign playing up the role of dads in families.

The first ad in the series shows several football stars, former and current, discussing what it means to be a dad and what they learned from their own dads. Some of the athletes are also joined by their children.

"What type of excuse can you give your father when he has prosthetic legs and he's getting up and he's walking and he's cleaning gutters," says LaVar Arrington, former linebacker for the New York Giants.

"He was my biggest fan," Kurt Warner, former quarterback for the Arizona Cardinals, says of his father. "And he always felt like whatever I was doing that was the most important thing. And that's something I've tried to take and apply to my kids."

The ad ends with an invitation to viewers to tweet photos of their dads using #OneBoldChoice "to join our big game celebration."

The NFL has been battling an image problem following several domestic violence scandals this past season. In its wake, several Super Bowl ads this year promise to use heartwarming images, as well as both challenge and celebrate the meaning of modern manhood. The Toyota ad appears to tick both boxes.

Email ben.popken@nbcuni.com or tweet @bpopken.