Starting tackle Jones lines up with complaint Veteran says he'll ask for trade after Ogden pick

April 21, 1996|By Mike Preston | Mike Preston,SUN STAFF

Offensive tackle Tony Jones said he wants to be traded in the wake of the Baltimore Ravens' selection of UCLA tackle Jonathan Ogden as their No. 1 draft pick yesterday.

Even though team officials said they would move Ogden to left guard and that Jones would stay at left tackle, Jones said he has doubts about his future with the Ravens.

Ogden, the fourth player chosen overall, played left tackle at UCLA.

"I'm extremely unhappy right now," said Jones, one of the premier and underrated tackles in the league. "I figured that as much as I have done for that team, they would at least call and tell me something about who they were going to draft, but I haven't heard a word from them. I'm going to pursue some other options."

Jones said he spoke with his agent, Tom Condon, yesterday, and asked him to speak with the Ravens about a possible trade.

Condon did not return phone calls to his office yesterday.

Ozzie Newsome, the team's director of operations, said last night he had not spoken with Condon or Jones. He did not seem concerned about Jones' statements.

"We've said all along that Ogden was going to play left guard and Tony was our left tackle," said Newsome. "This lineup now gives us one of, if not the best, offensive lines in pro football. I think Tony's reaction is pretty typical of what happens to some players on draft day."

Said Jones: "Yeah, they may tell you guys that, but I've been around this league for a long time. You can't take a 6-8, 318-pound lineman and tell him to play guard. It doesn't happen."

Jones, 6 feet 5 and 295 pounds, is one of the team's leaders and also the Ravens' iron man, having played in 99 straight games.

He was one of the team's most recognizable players in Cleveland because of his involvement in numerous charity organizations.

"That's what gets me," said Jones, 29, an eight-year veteran who team officials said makes nearly $2 million per season. "I think I have done a lot of work for the team, been durable and then this happens.

"I don't know if I'm on the trading block or what. I don't know what's going on. If I don't get traded, I'll come to camp next week and see what is going on. I'll play the season, and then check out the options."

Said Ogden of Jones: "I haven't talked to him. I've seen him play and he's a very good left tackle. I'm sure I can learn a lot from him."

Pub Date: 4/21/96

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