Many observers have considered Shayne Graham the favorite to win the Ravens' kicking job since the day he signed with Baltimore this offseason.
But when the Ravens make their final roster cuts today, many (including myself) now believe Billy Cundiff will be the guy left standing.
Cundiff, a six-year veteran, has outperformed Graham throughout training camp and the preseason. Once somewhat of an afterthought, Cundiff could now emerge as the Ravens' kicker Week 1 against the Jets.
"I'm going to be honest, I feel confident in my performance," Cundiff said yesterday. "When it comes to what they're thinking, I have no idea. I haven't really worried about what they're thinking. I did what I could, I'm going to go home and see my family, and they'll let me know if they want me around."
Cundiff was a perfect 3-for-3 in field goals this preseason, and he consistently boomed his kickoffs past the goal line.
As far as the 30-year-old is concerned, he couldn't have done much more.
"I think I did the best I possibly could," Cundiff said. "Took advantage of all the opportunities I was given on the field and practiced well in training camp, so I feel really good about it."
Graham's edge over Cundiff is his track record. The longtime Bengals kicker is the fourth-most accurate kicker in NFL history, compiling an 85.2% field goal percentage over the course of his nine-year career.
That's an area where Cundiff knows he can't compete, but he says he's not worried about previous years at this point.
"If you're going to look at historical percentages, yeah, he's got me on that one," Cundiff said. "But at the same time, I haven't had the situation where I've been in the same place for nine years. So there's different things that are involved. It's not always cut and dry.
"What's that they say - 'If you torture the numbers long enough, they'll tell you anything'. So it's kind of one of those situations. Shayne's obviously a really good kicker, and going into this I knew I was going to have to do my best, and I did."