Anthony Munoz Anchor of the 1980s Bengals Offense
The Cincinnati Bengals had many offensive stars come and go during their pair of Super Bowl runs in the 1980s however one of the constant forces on these teams was Anthony Munoz.
The University of Southern California product excelled as a straight-on blocker. He was agile, quick, and strong in addition to having great foot quickness and agility necessary to block quick defensive ends. The offensive lineman even recorded seven receptions for four touchdowns during his 13-year career.
Munoz played in 11 straight Pro Bowls from 1981 to 1991 and was named the NFL Offensive Lineman of the Year in 1981, 1987 and 1988 as well as the NFL Players Association Lineman of the Year in 1981, 1985, 1988 and 1989.
Munoz’s greatest honors came when he was named to the NFL’s 1980s All-Decade team and the league’s 75th Anniversary All-Time Team. As his streak of Pro Bowl appearances was coming to a close in 1991, Munoz was also awarded the Walter Payton Man of the Year Award for his volunteer and charity work, as well as his excellence on the field.
This all led to Munoz becoming the first ever Bengals player to be ensured into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1998. The only other Bengal connection to Canton is the team’s founder and first head coach Paul Brown.
Many believe Munoz only played for the Cincinnati Bengals throughout his professional career, which is partially true. Munoz’s failing knees caused him to reunite with former Bengal coach Sam Wyche, when he signed as an unconditional free agent with Tampa Bay. Munoz made a brief, albeit unofficial uni cameo during the 1993 preseason with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. He retired after being cut before the regular season started.