By: Bob George/BosSports.net
December 08, 2004

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For six seasons, he was simply wunderbar. Horst Muhlmann kicked for the Cincinnati Bengals and hit on 67% of his kicks during his tenure in the Queen City. He hailed from West Germany and was a former soccer goalie prior to his coming to the NFL. Muhlmann was one of the constants of the very early Bengals, during a time when the expansion team was struggling to find a core of talent. Er tritt weg und der Stoß segelt aus der Ende Zone heraus, der Konkurrent übernimmt an der Zwanzig-Yard-Linie. Translation: touchback.

Someone tell the Atlanta Falcons that it's a little odd for a 9-2 team to get shut out at this time of year.

The best 5-7 team in the league right now? Here come those Carolina Panthers.

MVP of the Patriots? Which key player's only missed game of the season resulted in the only Patriot loss of the season?

Sooner or later, ignorant reporters will stop hammering Corey Dillon with questions about his attitude in Cincinnati.

I saw Dean Martin. I saw his roasts. Thurston Long, you're no Dean Martin.

For starters, you were way too sober.

Green Bay needed to make a statement against Philadelphia. They made one, but it wasn't the one they wanted to make.

Revenge for the preseason? That 31-3 loss at Paul Brown Stadium in August will come up in Foxborough this week.

In other words, if you're worried about 58 points followed by a win at Baltimore, don't be.

Besides, how will Dillon approach the Bengals coming to Foxborough? Just think beautiful Patriotic thoughts, everyone.

Geek of the week: Dennis Green didn't mess up enough by drafting Larry Fitzgerald instead of Ben Roethlisberger. No, he has to go and start Tom Brady's overrated successor at Michigan, Jon Navarre, the third quarterback he has used this year. Ugh.

Put Eli Manning back on the bench, Herr Kommandant.

Things will be lousy when Peyton Manning breaks Dan Marino's touchdown pass record, and any other passing record along the way.

Why? The two men have a combined championship total of zero, while Brady continues to be disrespected by many. I said "many", not "all".

Honk if you're sick of Peyton Manning.

Drat those Jets. How come the Patriots are 11-1 and have only a two-game division lead?

Buffalo's on the rebound, and people are taking notice.

Troy Brown now has two picks. Somewhere, Chuck Bednarik must be proud.

Pittsburgh simply can't run the table. If the Patriots do also and have to play on the road at Pittsburgh at 15-1, it will make NFL history (most wins by a road playoff team), and it will mean that one missed game by Dillon changed the course of an entire season.

But the Patriot players would kill for a rematch at the Ketchup Bottle.

Face it, if the Eagles cannot make it to the Super Bowl this year, Andy Reid will have a ton of explaining to do.

Not to mention what Terrell Owens will have to say about it.

The Patriots have four opponents left. Two of them have three wins combined.

Back to school: Notre Dame deserves whatever negative fallout comes from the unbelievable firing of Tyrone Willingham.

Back to school Jr.: Season's greetings, Auburn Tigers, and enjoy the benefits and rewards of your 12-0 record. And while you're at it, enjoy watching the BCS championship on TV.

The BCS. Go watch Police Academy 2 and learn what a real BCS is. Oh heck, we'll tell you: Body cavity search. I'd rather drink a tablespoonful of castor oil than go through something like that.

The dumbest play of the year for the Denver Broncos was that lob pass by Jake Plummer which was picked off in the end zone by Jerry Wilson late in the game. Mike Shanahan's reaction said it all.

Washington scored 31 points today. It was the first time all year they exceeded 20. Yikes.

End of the first quarter: Tennessee 24, Indianapolis 17. Rest of the game: Indianapolis 34, Tennessee 0. Now that's a wacky game.

And as long as they refuse to play good defense, there will be no Vinces and Brickyards in the same city.

One Patriot who is perhaps not rooting for a run of the table is Ty Law. If they continue to win without him, what kind of spin will the Postons put on it this offseason?

Dexter Reid gave up 93 yards on two plays. Expect the rookie to have a rough week.

And it will be rougher dealing with mischievous teammates than a displeased head coach.

The Chiefs and Raiders played an old time Chiefs/Raiders game on Sunday. They still don't like each other one bit.

Remember him: Before Corey Dillon, Ickey Woods and Pete Johnson, there was Paul Robinson. In the inaugural season for the Bengals (1968), Robinson gained 1,023 yards rushing and caught the attention of all AFL fans nationwide. Robinson would never enjoy that success again, as he would be de-emphasized in the Bengal offenses thanks in part to the arrivals of quarterbacks Greg Cook and Virgil Carter. He rushed for the Bengals during their first five seasons before ending his career with the Houston Oilers. Robinson is still remembered for that 1968 campaign, and lives on in the memories of all Bengal fans who were there from the get-go.

That's all the Rams could do at home against a 1-11 team? 16 points? The Patriots get the 49ers at Foxborough the last week of the season, just for comparison down the road.

Thank you, Kevin Jones, for giving Detroiters a wistful yet painful reminder of a former great Lion back who chose to quit rather than honor his contract.

Is Jim Haslett a bad coach? Or are the Saints really that bad? This may be one situation where the coach goes, but really should not.

Three things you can count on. Death. Taxes. The Seahawks can't close out an opponent at home.

Darn. Just like August. We have to figure out how to spell Houshmandzadeh again.


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