First of all let me tell you that when there’s a break about a “front runner” for a role, the conversion rate is usually less than fifty percent. Studios and filmmakers like to see how the world reacts to the possibility.

Imagine if the internet was like it is now when Michael Keaton was among the choices to play Batman.

According to Deadline Cobie Smulders is the ‘front runner’ for the role of SHIELD agent Maria Hill in the Avengers flick. You may know her from How I Met Your Mother or more importantly, The Slammin’ Salmon (which may be the last thing Broken Lizard does that I support). She’s got pretty good comedic chops, acquits herself admirably dramatically, and is less hideous than most.

How big can this role be? Everyone’s in Joss Whedon’s movie. Chris Evans and his shield, Jeremy Renner and his bow, Mark Ruffalo and his ripped pants, Sam Jackson and his patch, Scarlett Johansson and her tight ass, and Robert Downey Jr and his helmet plus all the associated support personnel and villainy.

The movie’s jam packed, but there’s room for Smulders (or the delectable Monica Baccerin, who’s also a contender). It can’t be a huge role. But here we are writing about it.

The Avengers is coming in the summer of 2012, Mayans be damned.