Hours after his former
Mason, 37, is the Ravens' all-time leader in receptions and receiving yards. The Ravens released him prior to camp to create $4.5 million in salary-cap room.
"After a lot of very thoughtful and careful consideration, conversations with my family and prayer, I have decided to sign with the New York Jets," Mason said in a statement. "I'm looking forward to working under
The Ravens have lost out on two wide receivers —
Now, the Ravens may turn to former Jets receiver Jerricho Cotchery.
But Cotchery is visiting the Ravens' most heated rival, the
Cotchery, 29, had 41 catches for 433 yards and two touchdowns for the Jets last season. He has expressed interest in the Ravens, a league source said.
From 2006 to 2008, Cotchery had at least 70 catches.
Ravens players were not sure what Mason planned to do when they spoke with reporters after the team's practice at M&T Bank Stadium on Saturday. Quarterback
"Derrick is a great locker room guy," Flacco said before cracking a smile. "He can be a little bit of a diva sometimes, but that's all good and fun with him for the most part.
"Derrick is a great wide receiver. He can help this team out in my opinion. Yeah, I would welcome him back immediately.".
"Me and Derrick have a great rapport," Boldin said. "I think he can help us out tremendously. I would love to have him."
Flacco made a point to say how losing four veterans (Mason,
"When we were heading into the offseason, we were a pretty veteran team. That was one of those things that we could feel pretty confidently about going into the lockout," Flacco said. "Now, we got young pretty quickly. So, any time you get a guy who is a veteran and has played games in the
J. Smith's makes brief appearance
The club's 27th overall pick in April, Smith participated in the first hour of practice at M&T Bank Stadium. But shortly afterward, he donned a white hat and watched from the sideline.
In the locker room, Smith said his abbreviated appearance was scripted by the coaching and medical staffs.
"It was never the plan to go full today," he said. "It was to just go out there and run around and loosen up. I felt good, but they want to wait until next week for me to get back and give it a full-go."
C. Williams makes impression
Cornerback Cary Williams pulled in his third interception in two days, stepping in front of rookie wide receiver LaQuan Williams and picking off a pass by rookie quarterback
"It's just me playing football," Williams said. "Last one was just cover zero, the ball had to come out quick. I looked at the receiver's split and basically made a read off of it. I had to break in front of him if I wanted the interception."
Fans turn out
An announced crowd of 24,078 turned out for the Ravens' practice at M&T Bank Stadium on Saturday. The attendance surpassed last year's total of 17,851 and pleased Harbaugh.
"They were loud, they were excited, the guys were excited, and it was really just a great environment," he said. "This is just one of the better things that we do as an organization."
One factor in the increase may have been this session being the only one open to fans this summer. Because of uncertainty as to when the lockout would end, the Ravens decided in late June that they could not bring training camp to McDaniel College in Westminster, as they had done so for the previous 15 summers. The team's facility in Owings Mills was not built to accommodate fans, so all practices to this point have been closed to the public.
Players who did not practice included wide receivers James Hardy (hamstring) and Rodney Bradley (unspecified), center