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Inside Answers: Derrick Mason


*For the latest edition of Inside Answers, we've taken questions from fans and brought them to a top performer in the Ravens' most-recent game. *

Here's wideout Derrick Mason with his answers to your questions.

[Ed. note: Questions may have been edited for clarity.

Dustin Lerma, San Antonio: Great game Derrick, and way to take that hit and score! My question for you is, after deciding to "unretire" and come back, do you feel you made the right decision? I think you did. Let's make a push for the playoffs! Go Ravens!

Mason:"I hope I made the right decision. It still remains to be seen. I came back to finish out and win a Super Bowl and help this team. I was cool with my decision, anyway, but I wanted to win a championship. If we don't, coming back doesn't mean as much. I wanted to put this team in a position to win a Super Bowl, so I'll let you know if I made the right decision once the season is over with."

Chris Washington, Dayton, Ohio: Week in and week out, you do something that makes some wonder that you are one of the toughest wide outs in the game. Going into a game how do you mentally prepare yourself and how would you define your work ethic?

Mason:"My work ethic is something I've had going way back to high school. I had older brothers, and they would always tell me what I needed to do and to work harder than anyone. That continued to when I went to college, where I had very demanding coaches. You develop that habit over the years, and once you come to the NFL, it's no different. My work ethic actually got a lot better at this level. So, it's something that I've always had, but each and every year, you have to make sure that hunger is still there."

Lindsay Klingler, Aberdeen, Md.: Hey Derrick! We all love  No. 85 and I swear sometimes the way Clayton runs, his body movement reminds me exactly of you! What is the best advice you can give the younger receivers on our team? You are no doubt the go to guy and I always am confident that you will make the play. Please, don't ever retire!! I know you have to at some point, but we want you to win a Super Bowl. You deserve it!

Mason:"Thanks. I would say that they really need to take pride in what you do. You have to understand that this is a business, and there are business decisions being made every day. As a professional, you have to go out and make sure that whatever the team chooses to do, you make it hard for them. That is how you hold on to your job in this league.

Danny Gallagher, Baltimore: Hey Derrick, how do you feel about breaking loose for that 62-yard touchdown and do you think that this will help your confidence going into the final few games?

Mason:"It was a surprise because when you take a hit like that you expect to go down, but I was able to stay on my feet courtesy of the guy behind me. He gave me a little nudge forward as the guy hit me backwards. So, I attribute that to [Phillip] Buchanon as well. I've got to give him a little bit of credit on that one as well. But you expect to fall down once you get hit like that, especially from a safety, but I was able to stay on my feet, figure out where I was after I got hit and score a touchdown."

Glenward Fuchs, Owensboro, Ky.: There are a few key Ravens that are starting to move closer to the end of their careers respectively. From what you see in the locker room, and on the practice field; do you think that the younger players will be able to keep winning once these veterans are gone?

Mason:"I think there are guys here that are capable of leading this team at some point in their career, but the thing about it is that our older guys are still performing at a high level. They're still being vocal and leading by example. That gives the younger guys something to look at that is tangible, so when they get their opportunity to lead, that is something they'll be accustomed to."

Julian Adams, Pasadena, Ca.: Hey Mr. Mason I play football for my high school team and I was just wondering, what is your secret to running your routes so efficiently?

Mason:"Years and years of practice. You have to understand that as you play this game, over the years you won't be able to run as fast as you once could. You have to run a good route in order to get open in this business."

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