USA Today polled 25 NFL agents on a variety of items, including questions about team decision-makers (coaches, general managers and owners) they respect the most and trust the least.
About to oversee his final draft as Ravens GM, Ozzie Newsome earned high marks from agents, ranking No. 1 — above New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick — in the category of decision-makers agents respect the most.
In that poll, Newsome received one more vote than Belichick, according to USA Today. With the franchise since it moved to Baltimore in 1996, Newsome has won two Super Bowls with the Ravens and was a Hall of Fame tight end with Cleveland Browns. Belichick's Patriots have won five Super Bowls in their eight appearances under him.
In a USA Today column about the poll, one agent said of Newsome: "You can sit down and have a frank discussion with him. He won't pull punches, but he's fair."
In his first draft with the Ravens, Newsome selected two Hall of Famers, offensive tackle Jonathan Ogden and middle linebacker Ray Lewis, in the first round. At the "State of the Ravens" news conference in early February, owner Steve Bisciotti said Newsome would be moving to a different role after the 2018 season and Eric DeCosta would succeed him as GM.
Two USA Today reporters spent the past 5½ weeks polling the agents. The agents were granted anonymity for their survey responses because of the sensitive nature of the topics and risk of business-related ramifications, according to USA Today.