Pain Train or Ho-Train?

November 08, 2010 | Thyrl Nelson

It’s time for the Ravens to stop acting like chicks.


There are some things that I never expected to have to say, but it’s time for the Ravens to toughen up a bit. Maybe this is the trade off for bringing in the types of weapons that are required to make a team explosive. Whether or not these Ravens actually evolve into being offensively prolific, it’s fair to say right now that they’re at least prolifically offensive. Now we’ll have to see whether the tough talking coach, John Harbaugh is able to reel in this bunch at least enough to restore a modicum of decorum and professionalism.

While we all sort of knew that with the offensive upgrades that the team was looking to make, a certain amount of diva-ism would be par for the course. But with the season halfway in the books, the Ravens are still a middle of the pack team when it comes to offense, ranking 15th in the league in yards per game, passing yards per game and points per game (opponents notwithstanding). However, you’d be hard pressed to tell that by the humility, or lack thereof on the offensive side of the ball.


Consider already, that known diva TJ Houshmandzadeh in his short tenure with the team has seemingly produced as many incendiary sound bytes as touchdowns. At least with him, we expected it. But what about Derrick Mason?


Sure Mason has raised an eyebrow or two with some of the comments he’s made over the course of his Ravens’ career, but what wide receiver doesn’t do that? From his voiced exasperation over not getting the ball often enough, to his announced retirement and Super Bowl or bust proclamations, Mason has seemingly never been at a loss for words, nor has he seemingly cared about the impact that those words may have on his team. (On a side note: What’s with Mason getting the last intro when the offense is being introduced for home games? Is this in deference to his tenure with the team, or an attempt to appease him with more spotlight?) One might even make the argument, that while Mason should be applauded for volunteering his services to help in the punt return game, offering that tidbit to the media, during his self professed media blackout no less, could also be viewed as an unwelcome distraction.


So maybe we too should shoulder some of the blame for Sunday’s apparent meltdown, for simply being amused by Mason’s public undressing of Channing Crowder in the lead up to Sunday’s game. Indeed if we look at the context of Crowder’s comments in which he refers to Mason as an “old man”, surely he didn’t mean it as a slight. You can watch the video here, and Crowder’s comments come in the first few seconds. In addition to referring to Mason as the old guy, he also calls him “good as hell”. Also overlooked by Mason and the “incensed” Ravens offense was Crowder calling Ray Rice very good, LeRon McClain one of the best fullbacks in the game, plus fawning over the offensive line and Boldin and Houshmandzadeh. Perhaps what really set Mason off was being the last one mentioned by Crowder. Given Crowder’s Anne Frank reference in his own post game tirade, it’s fair to say that he’s not good with names, and that Mason’s probably slipped his mind honestly. For the record, he said nothing of Heap either…imagine the nerve.

Next, as it relates to context, let’s talk about the alleged spitting incident, and the series of events that led up to it. (Granted, the network didn’t cover it well to begin with, but here’s what it looked like from my end.)  NEXT PAGE