By Doug Farrar
NEW ORLEANS — With all the talk about minority hiring and firing in the NFL over the last month, there’s a Super Bowl team whose personnel was assembled by a man of African-American descent, and that man doesn’t seem to get nearly enough credit for it — at least in the public eye. When the league’s great personnel executives are discussed, Baltimore Ravens general manager Ozzie Newsome isn’t generally at the top of any list not assembled from inside the league. But when you look at the record of the man who, along with Ray Lewis, has been the Ravens’ only constant fixture since the franchise moved from Cleveland after the 1995 season, it’s tough to find any NFL executive who has been able to formulate more consistent success.
Former Ravens head coach and current FOX Sports analyst Brian Billick once compared Newsome to John Nash, the Nobel Laureate in Economics and subject of the best-selling book and hit movie ‘A Beautiful Mind,” when Newsome was at the draft board. Few in the league would dispute that Newsome has a knack for getting the right players for the Ravens, though it does seem at times that he’s taken for granted in the grand scheme of things. The man who has a chance to win his second Super Bowl as a team-builder received few media mentions when Executive of the Year mentions were made.