4. Ben Mason, FB, Ravens
It feels weird to put a rookie on this list, but it stands to reason that Ben Mason is in need of a strong training camp this summer.
A fifth-round pick and the last of Baltimore’s eight selections in the 2021 NFL Draft, Mason was brought on to serve as a hybrid fullback/tight end in a Ravens offense that adores extra blockers.
Still, it seemed like an odd choice at the time given the presence of Pro Bowl fullback Patrick Ricard and even excellent blocking tight end Nick Boyle.
Where did Mason fit in? A few months later and that question is still being asked.
Mason underwhelmed during OTAs and minicamp tallying multiple drops and looking in over his head as a receiver. Still, part of that was to be expected.
The strength of Mason’s game doesn’t lie with his soft hands of slick route running, but with his powerful blocking. The former Michigan standout was drafted to serve as an extra lead blocker as opposed to a dynamic receiving threat.
Unfortunately, it’s hard to demonstrate those skills in padless practices.
Training camp will be Mason’s time to shine. This is his time to show the Ravens exactly why they drafted him and for him to usurp players like Josh Oliver (a spring standout) on the depth chart.
He needs to find his niche, and training camp will give him the opportunity to do so.