“Blindsided” by his release, Derrick Mason “holds no grudges” as he joins the Jets


Receiver Derrick Mason officially has joined the New York Jets on a two-year deal, nearly two weeks after being abruptly released by the Ravens.  He addressed the situation in his first media session in the world’s biggest media market.

“It’s business,” Mason said in quotes distributed by the team.  “It’s the business of football, and I understand it.  Was I blindsided?  Yeah, I was, and when you’re blindsided, yeah, you’re upset about it.  It can be with any job.  If you felt that you were going into a situation where you were on the cusp of something special, and you never thought that you would be released, or fired, or what not, you would be a little bit upset, but I had my moment.  After that, I understood it’s the business of football.  It happened to me before, and it happened to me again.  It happens to everybody in this business, whether you’re great at your position or not.  You’re going to get released.  You just have to be able to deal with it as quickly as possible.”

Mason said being cut by the Ravens wasn’t a factor in his decision to join their biggest non-AFC North rival.  “I believed both teams are very good,” Mason said.  “I just felt that this was the place I needed to be when it was all said and done.  I hold no grudges towards Baltimore.  That city, those fans embraced me six years ago, embraced my family.  Forever I will be appreciative of that.  So I have nothing against Baltimore.  It was just that this was the right place for me.”

Even though coach Rex Ryan couldn’t keep defensive end Shaun Ellis in town, Rex was able to seal the deal with Mason.  “I felt like I was in college again,” Mason said, laughing.  “When you have someone sitting across from you that understands and knows your work, and knows that you can play this game, and still play it at a high level, and respects that, that means a lot.  That’s what Coach Rex basically echoed to me.  ‘You still can play this game. I’ve seen tape of you last year. You still can play this game at a high level and you can help us.’  That’s all it took, was someone else believing that you could still play this game.  So, like I said, why not come down here with the big fella and try to win a championship?”

Mason plans to start practicing tomorrow with the new-look receiving corps, which Mason declined to call an improvement over the 2010 edition of the team’s pass catchers.

“I am not going to say it’s an upgrade,” Mason said.  “I think the experience is an upgrade, obviously.  I have been at 15, [Plaxico Burress] has been at it I think over 10, close to 10, if not over 10 and [Santonio Holmes] has been at it a very long time as well so I think the experience part is but to sit here and say talent wise we are better is degrading to the guys that were here. . . .  Upgrade as far as experience, yeah.  But those guys were great with what they did last year.  They made it to the AFC Championship last year.  This year we are just trying to win two more games, the AFC Championship game and the Super Bowl.  That’s all.”

Mason puts them in better position to do it.  He comes from a team that had too many possession receivers to a team that needs one with Mason’s skills and savvy.  There will be plenty of chances for Mason to catch passes, as Holmes draws double coverage — and if Plaxico can get his legs back quickly and command extra attention, too.

Even if the Ravens were simply hoping to get Mason back at a lower price, the unofficial explanation surely will be that they chose to cut ties one year too early instead of one year too late.  And there’s a chance the maneuver came just in time for the Jets.

Either way, it’ll make the October 2 game between the two teams even more interesting, starting at 8:20 p.m. ET or so on NBC.

37 responses to ““Blindsided” by his release, Derrick Mason “holds no grudges” as he joins the Jets

  1. Mase moves the Jets over the top. No doubt he is going to make several HUGE catches this year with this run-first offense.

    PS the Steelers still suck.

  2. I’d love to buy Derrick Mason and Shawn Ellis a drink and then sit back and listen to that conversation…

  3. Releasing D-Mase in ’05 was a definitive mistake that’s plagued the Titans’ Title dreams to this day. Ravens, get ready for a rough ride. Jets? Congratu-freaking-lations.

  4. Derrick holds no grudges about being “blindsided” but remains suspicious that Hines Ward might have been involved.

  5. Mase still has it. At 37, still has some of the surest hands in the league.

    Shaun Ellis, thanks for 11 years of hard work! Even though you sucked for the past 2 years, you’ll always be a jet! best of luck in NWE.

  6. Best of luck to him with the Jets. The Ravens did let him go to soon. Hopefully they’ll find an adequate replacement.

  7. This is why the NFL is so great! How many twists and sub stories are there between all of these teams. Can’t wait for the season to start!

  8. Jets are real good, no denying that. Unfortunately we’ve seen the ceiling on Sanchez, just another serviceable average Joe…. Even if he was the 5th pick overall.

  9. it didn’t work out last year having that many possession receivers. he wouldn’t fit in this year. no disrespect to Mase because he’s still one of my favorite players, but we need young fast guys not old slow guys. I hope he does well with the Jets except when he plays us.

  10. ToAllJetFans: Your Reciving Corps=30 Something AND THAN SOME…UHHHOHHHH!!! PS-Have PLENTY of ICE on-hand…it’s gonna be an F’ing long season…ENJOY!

  11. The jets recording corps will never be equal to that of the steelers with the greatness of ward and wallace and 2 rings that ward has which is double that of your whole organization.

  12. I love watching Mason catch the football…he’s a great player who always is the right place at the right time. He’s going to be a challenge for the NE defense…BB hasn’t figured out how to slow that guy down…at any age.

  13. From one loser team to another. Stop crying and get used to always coming in 2nd, or last for that matter. 6

  14. “Jets are real good, no denying that. Unfortunately we’ve seen the ceiling on Sanchez, just another serviceable average Joe…. Even if he was the 5th pick overall”

    Gotta love the morons that post on here…

    A QB who’s 24, started 1 college season, and played for 2 whole NFL seasons has reached his ceiling??

    Sounds about right LMAO

  15. the double standard in football is so funny….just the other year derrick was saying he was going to retire because he didnt like his ravens contract……now two years later “he feels blindsided?”…….what a joke…just like the nflpa takes the nfl to court cause the nfl had lockout insurance,then it comes out that the players did too!!!!!!! just double standards!!!

  16. Let’s see – you can either get Mason, a productive guy with great toughness who gives top effort at all times, or…

    Ochocinco. Who has basically none of those qualities.

    Yup – I would say the Jets are laughing at their neighbors to the North again today. Way to go sexy Rex! You’ve handed your up-and-coming qb a fantastic group of receivers!

  17. Nice to see Steeler fans are still the “classiest” in the league. Be fortunate that the Jets didn’t show up in the first half or they would have kicked your ass, I’m sure it will be a much different story this year.

  18. It was time for Mason to go. As a ravens fan who daily tells anyone who’ll listen that Dmase is a HOF’er I think the bbirds will be fine without him. They’ll miss heap but now it’s time for #5 and the two amigo’s #27 and #81 to own this offense.

    They have to take out Ben rapin on 9/11 and then chico and the Fatman all in the first quarter of the season so they better be ready.

    Go RAVENS!

  19. 7to10for6allday says:
    Jets are real good, no denying that. Unfortunately we’ve seen the ceiling on Sanchez, just another serviceable average Joe…. Even if he was the 5th pick overall.

    How have we seen the ceiling on Sanchez if hes been in the league for 2 years. 2 years in which qbs have their biggest learning curves. Get a clue man are you kidding with that comment? Its called player progression and he still will be progressing the next few years just like all good young qbs in the league. How you came to that conclusion is beyond me.

  20. I have nothing bad to say about Mase as a person or a WR. He was the best WR to ever put on a Ravens uniform and I wish him success in all of his endeavors except when he plays my Ravens.

    The Ravens needed to get younger and faster at WR. The payed big money to Boldin to be their posession receiver. With Mase as the #2 or #3 it was really keeping the young guys from getting their chance. And while Mase is a major league competitor, he like many WR’s is a diva. He gets pissed off when he doesn’t get the ball enough.

    The Ravens have had a very tough off season. The have major league questions about their offensive line. The need a back up QB. They still need a pass rushing DE. But honestly, I think the WR corps will be ok. Just like Mike Wallace with the Squealers, Tandon Doss, David Reed, and Torry Smith will step up for the Ravens. Boldin is the 90 catch guy. Those guys don’t need to be all-stars but they do need to step up and be NFL players.

    Finally at 6rings of steel – why do you find it necessary to post your crap on every blog. you say the same stuff every time. No one cares. If it is possible, you give a bad rep to the Steelers fans who post on this blog. It is downright embarrassing. It’s a damn shame the condom broke the night you were conceived. The world would have been a better place.

  21. Check out Mason’s stats vs Steelers in the Ravens Playoff loss. 0 receptions for 0 yards.

    Mason should be surprised that anybody wants an old (37) and slow, possession receiver.

  22. It makes sense for the Jets to keep collecting Ravens players.

    Because if there is one thing that will get the Jets over the hump it is a bunch of Ravens players who couldn’t get THEM over the hump.

  23. @omegaichiban – Higher seed? You mean the higher seed that the Patriots wasted the past two years? Didn’t seem to hurt Mason and the Ravens too much in that 33-14 beatdown in Foxboro a couple of years back.

  24. OMG! A 37 year old receiver and the jets are superbowl bound. Why is it every time the Jets sign somebody there the key to the AFC championship..UUUMmm you have to play 17-18 more games before you get there and actually win again fatty rexy. The “All-Hype” team is at it again with a bunch over the hill players, child molesting QB and one great corner going to the superbowl.

  25. the Ravens have been too hesitant to actually play their young guys the past couple of years, they need to put Torrey Smith and Ed Dickson out there and see what they can do.

  26. You mean the guy who almost up and retired two seasons ago when the Ravens needed him the most? You mean, he was “blindsided”? Oh, I see.

    Sorry, D-Mase. There’s a reason Flacco called you a Diva. The Ravens did the most honorable thing they could, they let you go FOUR DAYS before they had to, so that you could shop yourself around and find a new team.

    Remember all the buzz about Ravens cutting players? Yeah, the buzz was because they let their guys go long before they had to in order to let them find landing spots. That’s class.

    D-Mase, Ozzie called you personally to tell you this (your words, heard directly out of your mouth on the radio) and I’m sure Ozzie treated you with immense respect on that call. You were the third best receiver on a team chock full of possession receivers, and at age 37, after watching the team draft two wide receivers in the draft, the thought that you could be moving on *never* entered your mind?

    Really? Hmm…I’d stay out of the “obvious prediction” business after you’re blindsided when the Jets release you next off-season.

    Even with those extra days to shop around, it still took another entire week for someone to offer D-Mase a contract. So I ask you all, why would anyone assume a) the Ravens treated him poorly, or b) Mason is anything close to a “game changer”?

    In this shortened and tense free agent signing period, it STILL took a relative eternity for someone to sign him. And, gee, look who it was — the loudmouth who loves scooping up ex-Ravens to stick it to his old team for not making him head coach.

    Message to Rex: you WOULD have been the Ravens head coach if you could have learned to control the aperture of your cookie hole.

  27. Don’t play Mason either side of the ravens game in your fantasy league but definitely start him against the ravens. I sniff a classic F U performance (11 catches for 167 yards and 2 TD’s). Then we’ll know if he holds a grudge

  28. it’s official… the Baltimore Ravens with will be playing the New York Ravens on Oct 2, 2011

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