From Cleveland to Baltimore: Highlights of Ozzie Newsome's career with the Ravens

The Baltimore Sun

Highlights from the career of Ravens general manager Ozzie Newsome, who will step down from his role after this season, owner Steve Bisciotti announced Friday:

1991: After retiring as a player, Newsome joins the Cleveland Browns’ front office as an assignment scout.

1994: Newsome is named the Browns’ director of pro personnel.

1996: Art Modell moves the Browns franchise to Baltimore, promoting Newsome to vice president of player personnel. Newsome’s first draft nets future Hall of Famer Jonathan Ogden as well as Ray Lewis, another likely Hall of Fame inductee this year.

1999: Newsome is inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

2000: Newsome is voted the NFL’s Executive of the Year. Newsome drafts running back Jamal Lewis, who becomes the teams’ all-time leading rusher.

2001: In their first postseason appearance, the Ravens win their first Super Bowl, defeating the New York Giants 34-7. Newsome drafts tight end Todd Heap, who becomes the Ravens’ all-time leader in touchdown receptions.

2002: Newsome is promoted and becomes the league’s first African-American general manager. Newsome drafts safety Ed Reed.

2003: Newsome drafts linebacker Terrell Suggs, who posts a team rookie-record 12 sacks.

2006: The Ravens finish the season 13-3, the team’s best record, but lose to the Colts in the divisional playoff.

2007: Coach Brian Billick is fired after a 5-11 season.

2008: With Newsome among those leading the search, John Harbaugh is hired as coach. Newsome drafts quarterback Joe Flacco. The Ravens go on to five straight playoff appearances, culminating in a Super Bowl win.

2013: The Ravens defeat the San Francisco 49ers to win their second Super Bowl title, 34-31. It marks the last game as a Raven for Ray Lewis, who retires, and for Ed Reed, who signs with the Houston Texans.

2014: Running back Ray Rice is accused of hitting his then-fiancee, Janay Palmer, in an elevator in an Atlantic City, N.J, casino. The domestic-violence case marred the reputation of both the Ravens and the NFL. Rice is released later that year by the Ravens; Newsome says that phone call was one of the toughest he’s had to make.

2017: After a tumultuous season that saw fan backlash after players knelt during the national anthem in London, the Ravens fail to make the playoffs for the fourth time in five years. The season ends in perhaps their worst regular-season defeat.

2018: Owner Steve Bisciotti announces Newsome, who has drafted 18 players who have earned Pro Bowl honors, will step down as GM after the season and will assume an unspecified role. Longtime assistant Eric DeCosta will take over the GM post.

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