The Associated Press has reported that Ravens wide receiver Derrick Mason is retiring at the age of 35, after 12 years in the NFL. Eight of those years were spent in Tennessee with the Titans, while the rest were with Baltimore.
Mason has yet to inform the team, but Mason reportedly told the website jocklife.com that he is reitiring. He said this in a statement.
"I have had a tremendous career and I played for two great teams, I had fun. In my career, I have been able to do everything but win a Super Bowl. I’ve had the opportunity to play on great teams and with great players. After 12 years, I have seen it all and done it all,”
He wasn't clear on his reason for retiring, although he says lack of enthusiasm led him to consider retirement.
“I have been thinking about this since the season ended. Emotionally I am just not that enthused. I have not been that enthused to get up and work out…it was getting to that point. This decision has nothing to do with the contract situation; I have made enough money, more than enough money. Emotionally there are things that are more important. It’s time right now."
Mason played at Michigan State before being drafted by the Tennessee Oilers in fourth round of the 1997 NFL Draft. He played with the Oilers/Titans.
He joined the Ravens in 2005 through free agency. He set several franchise records soon after. He became the Ravens first 100+ reception receiver in franchise history, a considerable feat considering the "run first" offense of the Ravens.
Last season, Mason was the favorite target of rookie QB Joe Flacco, and finished with 80 receptions, 1,037 yards, and five touchdowns.
Mason is not sure of what will follow his career in football, but say he wants to try broadcasting out. However, he says his family is what is most important.
While his departure leaves a big void in the passing game for QB Joe Flacco, Mason feels he has left Flacco in good hands.
“I have left them in great hands,” explained Mason. "Mark Clayton is a younger version of me and Williams can be a true player, he can be in the elite class. Smith, Harper, Washington, they all are a young group that can only be better with Joe in the backfield.”
As a Raven's fan, it is tough to say goodbye to the best receiver in franchise history, but I'm sure I speak on behalf of the fanbase when I say" Thanks for the memories and moments, I wish you luck in your retirement.