After one Super Bowl appearance, 2 Pro Bowls, 3 AFC Championship appearances, 4 teams and 15 seasons, Derrick Mason will forever live in Ravens lore. The former Baltimore receiver joined the Norris & Davis Show to talk about his decision to go out in purple, following his formal retirement announcement Monday in Owings Mills.
Long before Mason called M&T Bank Stadium home, he knew Baltimore was a football town that didn’t mess around.
“Playing against the Ravens for so long and coming to this city once a year, you can see that this was a true football town and you really don’t get to understand it unless you’re here. But on the other team, you can hear the crowd yelling and screaming, they’re true football fans and they made it difficult to come in here and play.”
Mason says all hostility toward him for being a rival Tennessee Titan for so long quickly disappeared when he arrived in 2005.
“When I came in here, they embraced me. I fell in love with them, they fell in love with me, and it was a perfect match. And when I left, my heart was still here.”
The wide receiver spent the majority of his career in Tennessee, where he won an AFC Championship in 1999 before losing his only Super Bowl appearance when Tennessee’s Kevin Dyson was tackled at the 1-yard line as time expired. He then came to Baltimore, where in six seasons, recorded franchise records of most career receiving yards (5,777), most career receptions (471), and most receptions in a single season (103 in 2007). He left the Ravens after the 2010 season and played for both the New York Jets and Houston Texans in 2011 before calling it quits. For Mason, it was hardly a question as to where to retire.
“I never felt comfortable in New York, nor in Houston, because I knew my best part of me, the muscle that I played with, was still here and that was my heart. So why not retire a Raven, the place where I had a lot of success and met a lot of good people?”
Host Steve Davis asked Derrick Mason about how he plans to fill the void of being a competitor every Sunday, a feat that Mason says is impossible.
“You can’t do it. So don’t even try. I’m just going to enjoy retirement, be with my children, and if I’m not doing radio on Sundays, I’ll enjoy it with my son and we’ll watch football games. So, that’s the only thing I can do, I don’t think there’s any way to kind of replace the feeling that you feel on a Sunday.”
Derrick Mason will now wait to see just how prestigious his time in Baltimore was, as speculation of being inducted in the Ravens “Ring of Honor” has already started to surface.
Written by Intern Dave Andrews