Ravens' Wooten steps down

Personnel assistant to remain as consultant

involved in NFL 36 years

May 23, 2000|By Ken Murray | Ken Murray,SUN STAFF

After spending 25 years in front offices with three NFL teams, John Wooten spent his last working day at the Ravens' complex yesterday, then slipped quietly into a consultant's role.

Wooten, 63, is headed home to Dallas, where he'll continue to assist the Ravens in pro personnel matters and college scouting."I have an appreciation for John for having him as an associate over the last two years," said Ozzie Newsome, the team's vice president of player personnel. "There's also an appreciation for what John has been to a lot of young people like myself starting in the business. He was always there to guide you."

Newsome said he was not ready to name a successor to Wooten as assistant director of pro personnel. "We're in the process of reshuffling the deck in the personnel department, but it's nothing major," he said.

Wooten invested a total of 36 years in the NFL, the first 10 as one of the league's best offensive guards. He played 122 games of his 136-game career with the Cleveland Browns, ending with the Washington Redskins in 1968.

As a personnel man, he spent 17 years with the Dallas Cowboys and six with the Philadelphia Eagles. He also spent one year in the league office. He joined the Ravens in 1998."I think the organization is in great shape," he said yesterday. "Barring injuries, I think the team will do well."

NOTES: Pat Moriarty, vice president of administration, will open negotiations with agent Mitch Frankel, agent for running back Jamal Lewis, the first of the Ravens' two first-round picks, on Wednesday in Boca Raton, Fla.

Next week, he'll head to the West Coast to talk with agent Marvin Demoff about a contract extension for Pro Bowl tackle Jonathan Ogden, and with agents Leigh Steinberg and Dave Dunn about a contract for quarterback and third-round pick Chris Redman.

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