Derrick Mason Abruptly Retires Leaving Ravens In a Hole

The RantCorrespondent IJuly 13, 2009

In an offseason where the Ravens were looking to add another big play receiver to play alongside Mason, they will now be searching for his replacement. 

ESPN has reported that Baltimore Ravens wide receiver Derrick Mason has announced his retirement on the website 

"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," Mason said.

"Right now, I am content with the decision I am making. All good things come to an end and I am ready to see what else life has to offer."

A Ravens spokesman said that Mason has yet to send a letter to the NFL informing them of his retirement, but the abrupt decision comes as a huge blow to the Ravens, who have been in search of another wide receiver target this offseason.

The Ravens have been unsuccessful in adding big names like Anquan Boldin and Brandon Marshall, both whom have been targeted as potential candidates. 

Mason, who was entering the final year of his contract, had been unsuccessful in negotiating a long-term contract this offseason. 

Replacing Mason's leadership, along with his 80 catches for 1,037 yards, won't be easy. Demetrius Williams will fill the void of the No. 2 receiver alongside the inconsistent Mark Clayton.

The addition of TE L.J. Smith should help the passing game, but second year quarterback Joe Flacco might have a few bumps along the way.

The Ravens are nearly out of options; the Marshall front has been quiet, and Boldin has remained MIA in the media since firing Drew Rosenhaus.

The Browns may still be interesting in moving Braylon Edwards, but the chances of the two in-division rivals making a trade is almost zero. 

Unfortunately for the Ravens, time may have run out.

If the Ravens don't add another receiving piece to their puzzle, it could be a tough sophomore season for Joe Flacco and head coach John Harbaugh.