Today is the 56th day of the NFL lockout and it’s getting extremely exhausting talking about whether or not this thing will get decided. It’s also getting extremely exhausting trying to figure out what kinds of things players are and are not allowed to do during the lockout. The whole labor mess is making it extremely difficult on new coaches, and on incoming rookies in particular. That’s where the veterans can step in and help. For the Ravens, the question will be whether they’ll be able to catch the two wide receivers that they drafted, Torrey Smith and Tandon Doss, up to speed in time to contribute early and often in. While they don’t have their playbooks because rules prohibit that right now, they have a number of veterans on the roster that can help them along as much as possible within the rules. One of those guys is Derrick Mason who looks to be the perfect vet to teach Smith and Doss how to become NFL wide receivers. Derrick Mason joined 105.7 The Fan in Baltimore on the Norris and Dave Show to chat about his thoughts on Rashard Mendenhall’s comments, how much some rookies will benefit from having a playbook to study compared to others who do not, whether or not he can share his playbook with the rookies, and what he makes of Jimmy Smith trying to buy the No. 21 jersey from Lardarius Webb.
What he makes of Rashard Mendenhall’s Twitter comments:
“I just thought it was the wrong thing to say at the wrong time. Whether you have your opinions on what happened on 9-11, there are a bunch of conspiracy theorists out there, whatever you think that’s your opinion and as a person I’m going to respect that but to do it right after the death of bin Laden was the wrong thing to do and the wrong thing to say. There were so many people that were affected by him and the things that he did and for you to come out and say that it was insensitive and that’s taking a lighter word. You saw it. He got a lot of backlash and then he had to go retract. My thing is when you say something say it and mean and get it over with. That’s just one of those things that you cannot say. Regardless of who you are and what you do you just cannot say something like that especially with this guy, they compared him to Hitler and you’re going and trying to defend him in some way, you can’t do that.”
How much it would help rookies to have a playbook:
“It would help them out a lot if they have one because now they’re behind the eight ball and just like a free agent coming in to a new team. If you don’t have the playbook it’s going to be that much harder to catch up to everyone else. This lockout, it’s been a disadvantage to free agents as well as the rookies coming in because they don’t know the offense, they don’t know where they stand in the offense and they don’t know anything about the team other than what they’ve seen on television or what they’ve talked to the GMs that run the club, or the Presidents or Head Coaches (about), that’s all they know. If they don’t have a playbook they’re going to come in day one not knowing anything and being behind the eight ball.”
If he has been able to share his playbook with the rookie wide receivers:
“I really don’t know the rules concerning that, but I need to find out. If they ask me, like I told Torrey as well as Tandon, whatever you guys need just call me. You need to know the offense or this or that, I’m going to be there to help you especially now because you don’t have the opportunity. You were drafted a few hours too late. You weren’t able to get the playbook like Jimmy (Smith) was. Whatever those guys need I’m going to help them. I’m going to help them stay one up on everybody else. Whether that be going over the offense or telling the certain things that’s my obligation. I’ve got to do that.”
On Jimmy Smith trying to purchase jersey number 21 from Lardarius Webb:
“I don’t know. You’d be a fool to pay for a jersey anyway. I’m not calling Jimmy a fool don’t get me wrong. He’s not a fool, he wants the number, and that’s up to him. I have never seen a number worth 10 thousand dollars. (Host: Hold on one second, we can make this tape seem like he just called Mendenhall a fool too right? Okay, you will be on PFT today?) Man PFT is so biased. It’s unbelievable how pro-NFL or anything opposite the players they are, it’s crazy. Besides some of the stuff that they write about that is kinda true and is out there that anybody can put out there, there’s a lot of stuff that they’re just so biased and when you read it it’s like are you kidding me? But let’s go back to Jimmy. I’ve never seen a number make a player.
It’s a player that makes the number. You come in, you get your number, and you make that number and make it what it’s worth. I didn’t have 85 when I came in. I had 82. Somebody took my 82 and that was probably the best thing in the world. I got 85. 85 didn’t make me. I pretty much made 85. Whatever number they give you, make that number. I’m pretty sure if they give Jimmy 27, he’s going to be the best 27 in the league. (Host: What about Ray Rice? Do you know something we don’t?) (Laughing) I’m just throwing numbers out. I didn’t even put Ray and 27 together. Let’s just say double zero. If they gave him double zero he would be the best double zero in the NFL because he’s just a very good player that has the potential of being a great corner. It’s not the number that’s going to make him, he’s gonna make the number. Whatever number he puts on his back they’re going to know he’s out there on the field.”