Ravens: Ben Mason needs a strong showing in training camp

Ravens, Ben Mason Mandatory Credit: Scott Taetsch-USA TODAY Sports
Ravens, Ben Mason Mandatory Credit: Scott Taetsch-USA TODAY Sports /

The Baltimore Ravens have high hopes for a number of their 2021 NFL Draft picks, but one player whose role seems undefined at the moment is fifth-round pick Ben Mason.

The Ravens selected Mason with the 184th overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft at the very end of the fifth round. It was a bit of a puzzling pick at the time given the presence of Pro Bowl fullback Patrick Ricard on the roster.

But the Ravens are a team that loves their tight ends/fullbacks so it seemed reasonable that Mason could still play a role as a hybrid fullback/tight end.

Unfortunately, he failed to stand out this spring and it’s unclear what his role will be this season. He needs a strong showing this summer to secure a role in the offense.

What will Ben Mason’s role be with the Ravens?

Mason didn’t really get the opportunity to show off his abilities during OTAs and minicamp. He underwhelmed as a receiver tallying multiple drops and was overshadowed by a few of his teammates.

But padless practices don’t exactly play to Mason’s strengths. The 22-year-old shined at Michigan as a capable receiver but also a powerful blocker.

It was always going to be difficult for Mason to stand out with the absence of pads. That’s why players like Josh Oliver excelled as much as they did.

On the contrary, Oliver flashed his excellent receiving abilities and looked like the player with the inside track to the third tight end job. But will Oliver hold up as a blocker once the pads come on this summer?

It’s a question that should be answered pretty soon.

Mason is in competition with not only Oliver, but others such as Eric Tomlinson, Eli Wolf, Jacob Breeland, and Tony Poljan for playing time. And possibly even a roster spot.

The Ravens loathe cutting draft picks early which would make you think it’s highly unlikely they release a rookie fifth-round pick before he even takes a snap. After all, the Ravens had a plan for Mason when they drafted him.

A trip to the waiver wire is an unlikely outcome, but Mason will still need a strong summer to prove to the coaching staff that he deserves a role on offense.

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Few players have more to lose/gain this summer than Ben Mason.