Ravens WR Derrick Mason announced his retirement on website jocklife.com He had 790 catches in his career.
â€œI 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,â€ Mason stated. â€œRight 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.â€
â€œI 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 outâ€¦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. I don't know what's going to happen from here, but it's going to be really nice to see what life has in store for me. What I want people to remember about my NFL career is that I played hardâ€¦played hard in practice and the game. I tried to make everyone better and would do anything to help.â€
Mason was a fourth round pick out of Michigan State in 1998. He surpassed 10,000 yards and 50 TDs last year and finished with 790 receptions, currently 20th all time. Mason was only voted to the Pro Bowl twice, but if the NFL had an All-Tough team Mason would have been a unanimous selection every year. Mason played last season with a dislocated shoulder yet still managed 80 receptions and 1,000 yards. It was almost painful to watch him as he played through the pain, grimacing after every catch.
I can't help but wonder if Steve McNairs death had anything to do with his untimely retirement? Or if injuries had just taken a toll on his body that he couldn't perform up to his high standards anymore.