OWINGS MILLS, Md. -- Ravens general manager Ozzie Newsome returned to Baltimore on Monday after becoming ill and spending Sunday night in Chicago following the team's loss to the Bears.
The Ravens said Newsome was "feeling fine" before boarding his flight home. After the game Sunday, the team released a statement that said Newsome "did not feel well" and a "team doctor recommended that Ozzie not fly tonight."
The Ravens lost in overtime 23-20 in a game delayed about two hours by bad weather. The 57-year-old Newsome has not displayed signs of ill health recently. He is often seen in workout clothes after a run on the treadmill or around the practice facility, and he enjoys other forms of cardio exercise.
Newsome's apparent recovery was a welcome piece of good news in the wake of another agonizing defeat for the defending Super Bowl champions. With their fourth loss in five games, the Ravens (4-6) fell 2½ games behind the first-place Cincinnati Bengals in the AFC North.
Baltimore led 10-0 before a torrential downpour forced a two-hour stoppage. The Bears then went up 20-17 before the Ravens got inside the muddy Chicago 5-yard line in the final minute of regulation but had to settle for a field goal. That set up the Bears to win in overtime and hand Baltimore its fifth loss by six points or fewer.
Newsome has built two Super Bowl champion teams in Baltimore and has a current run of five straight playoff appearances. He has kept the team in the upper echelon of the NFL by mastering the draft and shrewdly working the salary cap.
After the Ravens beat San Francisco in the Super Bowl last February, Newsome reworked the roster with an eye toward the future. He discarded several veterans such as Ed Reed and Bernard Pollard, signed a few free agents and hoped the new blend would work.
So far, the results have been disappointing.