The starting job next to Ed Reed was supposed to be fought between Tom Zbikowski and Haruki Nakamura. Now, the competition has become more crowded with the recent signing of Bernard Pollard. Zbikowski is expected to start in the opener, and Pollard will run with the second team.
VETERAN: FB Vonta Leach
While he'll only be on the field for a handful of plays, Leach should make a strong first impression if he delivers the same pops that made him an All-Pro fullback. He certainly has been relentless in training camp.
ROOKIE: LB Sergio Kindle
He's technically not a rookie, but this is the first NFL game for the Ravens' top pick in the 2010 draft. Few expected Kindle to be chasing down quarterbacks a year after he fractured his skull by falling down two flights of stairs.
ON THE BUBBLE: CB Cary Williams
No one on defense has had a better week leading up to the first preseason game than Williams, who is picking off passes daily. He is currently battling rookie Chykie Brown for the fifth cornerback spot.
OUT: C Matt Birk (knee), WR David Reed (wrist), OT Ramon Harewood (knees), TE Ed Dickson (hamstring), WR James Hardy (hamstring), RB Matt Lawrence (undisclosed). DOUBTFUL: CB Jimmy Smith (groin), CB Domonique Foxworth (knee), DT Brandon McKinney (knee). QUESTIONABLE: LB Tavares Gooden (neck), WR Justin Harper (undisclosed), OT Andre Ramsey (hand).