Billy Cundiff has heard the rumors. How could he not?
He's heard the talk all offseason about how the Ravens are planning on adding another veteran kicker to compete with him in training camp, how a proven guy like Shayne Graham might be joining him in Owings Mills sometime shortly.
But Cundiff doesn't listen to the talk. As far as he's concerned, he's the Ravens' kicker for the 2010 season until someone tells him otherwise.
"I'm going to be honest, I'm here," Cundiff said earlier this week. "And I've learned really quick...shoot, I'm 30 and I've been fired like eight times, right? Teams let you know when they don't want you around.
"As long as I'm here, I really could care less about whatever is said, because I have a chance to control what I do, and that's go out and make kicks. After that, I kind of let the rest be."
Cundiff broke into the NFL with the Cowboys in 2002, and he played four seasons in Dallas before being released during the 2005 campaign.
He's bounced around the league since then, spending time with the Packers, Saints, Falcons, Chiefs, Lions and Browns, and hasn't played more than seven games with one team since leaving the Cowboys.
The constant movement from one team to another has meant that Cundiff has rarely been able to settle in during a full offseason and work with one snapper, one holder and one coaching staff.
That hasn't been the case this year. Despite being a restricted free agent, Cundiff knew he would be with the Ravens this offseason, so he's had plenty of time to work with long snapper Matt Katula and holder Sam Koch the last few months.
"If you look at it, the last time I was with a team in the fall and followed up with that team in the offseason was 2005. That's five years ago; that's a long time," Cundiff said with a smile. "It's nice just because the continuity of the situation, where I get to work with Matt and Sam.
"I know kind of what [special teams coordinator Jerry] Rosburg wants now, I know what coach [John] Harbaugh expects of special teams, what he wants me to be able to do, because both those guys have high expectations. So it's nice to kind of set that up with all this hard work in the offseason so I can fulfill my goals and their goals when we get into the season."
The Ravens signed Cundiff in mid-November after releasing Steve Hauschka, and Cundiff was fairly successful, going 12-for-17 during the regular season, and making all three of his kicks in the postseason.
He says he feels like he's had a solid offseason as well, but in the NFL, where competition is king and Shayne Grahams are always a phone call away, Cundiff knows he needs to continue to improve.
"It's just about taking the next step," Cundiff said. "I think every year, every kicker, whether you're a Pro Bowl guy or a guy just trying to make the roster, you always think to yourself, 'How can I take myself to the next level? How can I get better?' And I feel like I'm making those steps."