Coaches have praised outside linebacker Sergio Kindle for his progress this offseason and throughout training camp.
But with one preseason game remaining, Kindle's spot on the roster is not guaranteed.
"He's not a lock, but he's done very well and this game will be important for him," Head Coach John Harbaugh said Monday.
The former second-round pick is competing with second-year outside linebacker Chavis Williams for a roster spot. Also, depending on how many linebackers the Ravens keep, both Williams and Kindle could end up making the team.
Kindle missed last week's game against Jacksonville because of a shoulder stinger and is hoping that he can play in the preseason finale Thursday night in St. Louis after practicing on Monday. He wasn't wearing a red non-contact jersey during the portion open to the media.
The deadline to trim the roster to 53 players is Friday at 9 p.m., making the game against St. Louis the last chance for bubble players to make a case for a job. In the first two preseason games, Kindle notched a total of four tackles.
"Going into the final preseason game, I know that the starters will sit a little more, so that will give me more time to get out there and display what I've learned and how far I've come since the incident," Kindle said, referring to the head injury he suffered before the 2009 season. "I'm looking forward to it."
Kindle's improvement the last few months has a been emphasized by the coaching staff – Linebackers Coach Ted Monachino described it as a "quantum leap" – as he took advantage of his first full offseason and dedicated himself to getting a better grasp on the playbook.
Kindle showed off his development early in training camp, as he made a habit of getting in the backfield and beating second-team offensive linemen on pass rushes.
"It's been a progression," Kindle said. "I feel that I've got more acclimated to the game speed with every play that I've been on the field."
That progression was somewhat halted after Kindle went down with a shoulder stinger in the second half against Detroit. He has been limited in practice since then and is focused on not rushing back from the injury.
"It's the worst, but of course it's part of the game," Kindle said about the injury. "I just have to rehab and try to get yourself back as soon as possible, but not rush it."
And as he heads into Thursday's preseason game where he could be fighting for a job, Kindle said that he's not trying to put any added pressure on the game.
"I wouldn't necessarily say pressure, but I've worked too hard [not to play well]," he said. "I feel that I'm capable of doing so, so all I have to do is go out there and do it."