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OL Anthony Munoz and Bruce Reimers are likely to miss the Bengals' playoff game Sunday against the Raiders. RB James Brooks is pessimistic about his chances too, but Coach Sam Wyche said there's a chance he could play with a splint on his dislocated left thumb.

Reimers is on crutches with a sprained left ankle. Munoz says he can't lift his left arm and feels worse than he has in the last month. He tore the rotator cuff and has been limited in the last four games.


Six Rams assistants, including defensive coordinator Fritz Shurmur, have been dismissed. Also fired: linebackers coach Fred Whittingham, secondary coach Steve Shafer, assistant defensive line coach Larry Brooks, assistant linebackers coach Artie Gigantino and special teams coach Jairo Penaranda.

Shurmur, 58, was the Rams' defensive coordinator since 1983 after spending a year as the team's defensive line coach. . . .

One day after replacing Buddy Ryan as coach of the Eagles, Rich Kotite fired special teams coach Al Roberts and linebackers coach Ronnie Jones. Kotite said he expects to keep the rest of Ryan's staff. . . .

Cowboys Coach Jimmy Johnson reassigned David Shula, saying he has begun a search for a new offensive coordinator. Shula has been given the new title of passing game coordinator-receivers coach. Johnson also released two coaches from the Tom Landry era: tight ends coach Alan Lowry and secondary coach Dick Nolan.


Patrick Forte has been hired as Patriots' assistant GM. For the past five years, Forte, 40, was assistant to the president and chief operating officer for the Eagles. . . .

Syracuse junior WR Rob Carpenter (52 catches, 895 yards, 5 TDs) says he will decide within a few weeks whether he'll make himself eligible for the April draft. Carpenter hinted that coach Dick MacPherson's decision to become coach of the Patriots could trigger his own exodus.