“Defensive and offensive linemen control the game and true sports fans know that.” – Dante Hall, former NFL return specialist.

For 182 starts, Anthony Muñoz wore the Cincinnati Bengals uniform while absolutely dominating on the playing field. Muñoz’s 13 seasons at left tackle led to a historic legacy in NFL history that is still getting the respect it deserves 42 years after his rookie season.

ESPN put together a panel of 50 experts, reporters, and analysts to determine the very best players at each position in NFL history. At offensive tackle, Anthony Muñoz walked away with the honors with 27 out of 50 votes.

The article included a few quotes on the selection, including this beautiful one from Michael DiRocco, Jaguars reporter:

“It’s pretty simple for me: He was as dominant a player at his position as there has been in the NFL. A mauler with the feet of a dancer, he could overpower guys or beat them with his mobility. Muñoz is the standard against which all offensive tackles are measured.”

A mauler with the feet of a dancer. I’m not sure you can top that description.

Muñoz made the First-Team All-Pro team in nine seasons and got second-team honors two other years. That’s right. The guy literally was named an All-Pro in 11 out of his 13 seasons in the league.

He’s a Hall of Famer, a member of the Bengals Ring of Honor, and is a member of pretty much every NFL Anniversary Team put together. Including the most recent one from the NFL’s 100th season. For his off-the-field efforts, he received the NFL Man of the Year award in 1991.

His level of dominance helped take the Bengals to two Super Bowls and although they resulted in losses, they should be considered a huge part of Muñoz’s legacy.

Among offensive positions, Muñoz is one of only three players to net over 50% of the votes in the article. Tom Brady and Jerry Rice are – understandably – the other exceptions (both getting close to 90% of the votes).

After he won the Rose Bowl with USC in his college day, head coach John Robinson said, “To me, that’s a perfect game. That’s one of the greatest things I’ve ever seen happen.”

Like that game, Muñoz’s career was perfect.

Featured image via David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports