Asa Jackson fielded the punt, broke a couple of arm tackles and burst through the middle of the field. As Jackson reached midfield, Atlanta Falcons punter Matt Bosher was the only one standing in the way of a Ravens touchdown.

What Jackson couldn't have anticipated, however, was tripping over his own feet. The play, followed by his second fumble of a punt in as many weeks in the third quarter, was a microcosm of Jackson's preseason: glimpses of game-breaking ability mixed with moments of frustration. The Ravens finished their preseason Thursday night with a 20-19 loss to the Falcons at the Georgia Dome and a 1-3 record, and now the real anxiety begins for Jackson and other players thought to be on the roster bubble.

"It's out of my hands now. I've always been a player that has a lot of confidence to make plays," Jackson said. "Sometimes being aggressive and doing that, that's the result sometimes. It's something that's not OK. I feel like this loss is on my shoulders because that was a touchdown that ended up winning them the game."

The Ravens, whose late rally from a 20-6 deficit fell short after a 2-point conversion attempt failed with 45 seconds left, have to cut their roster from 75 to 53 players by 4p.m. Saturday. Ravens coach John Harbaugh, who mentioned pending decisions at running back, wide receiver, defensive line and cornerback, said the Ravens might make some moves Friday and the rest Saturday.

While some players indeed were fighting for their careers in the final game of the preseason, most of the Ravens' roster decisions, in reality, have been made. Still, Thursday night offered one final opportunity for some players to force the coaching staff to reconsider their future with the team. Coach John Harbaugh certainly set the stage for them.

Harbaugh stuck to his plan of not playing his starters and even some key backups. Players such as Joe Flacco, Steve Smith Sr. and C.J. Mosley took part in warmups before returning to the sideline, where they donned hats and draped towels over their shoulders.

Backup quarterback Matt Schaub had his best performance of the preseason, going 7-for-7 for 88 yards while leading the Ravens to a field goal on his two drives. Wide receiver Marlon Brown caught three passes for 62 yards, including a 42-yard reception. It was the best he had looked this summer.

But Brown probably was going to make the team anyway. It's unclear whether the same can be said for Jeremy Butler, who had three catches for 16, including a 6-yard touchdown reception late in the fourth quarter. Butler appears to be the Ravens' sixth receiver, but they might not keep that many.

That's just one of the decisions the organization will have to make over the next 40 or so hours. With Lorenzo Taliaferro sidelined, who is the Ravens' third running back: Fitzgerald Toussaint or Terrence Magee? Neither did much of note in the loss to the Falcons (2-2).

"I feel like I put my best foot forward," said Magee, an undrafted rookie from LSU. "I put in the work and now I just have to sit back and see what happens."

The Ravens appear mostly set on the offensive line, but who will get the final one or two spots on the defensive line? Kapron Lewis-Moore, who missed the first two seasons of his career because of injuries, and Christo Bilukidi are two candidates, but neither got off to a good start as the Falcons, behind their starting offensive line, took the opening drive 75 yards on nine plays for a touchdown. Lewis-Moore later made a strong play to stop a running play and force a field-goal attempt.

Arthur Brown, a second-round draft pick in 2013, had an uneven night at inside linebacker, making a couple of big hits but failing to wrap up Justin Hardy on a 70-yard punt return late in the second quarter. It had been Brown's play on special teams that improved his roster chances.

Then there are the final couple of cornerback spots. Cassius Vaughn, who is competing with the likes of Jackson and Quinton Pointer, had a nice game. Jackson's best chance to make the team appears to be as the returner and replacement for Jacoby Jones.

For a moment Thursday, it appeared Jackson would score on the punt return and make it hard for the Ravens to leave him off the team. But after an unfortunate trip and his fumble, Jackson must sit and wait with many other Ravens, wondering whether he has done enough to make the team.

"You have to be consistent," Harbaugh said. "Asa has got all the tools and has all of the ability. You can tell he's a dangerous, dangerous returner. But you've got to be dangerous for them, not for us."

Notes: First-round pick Breshad Perriman caught passes for nearly 90 minutes on the field before the game, but the rookie wide receiver still wasn't running. … Ravens outside linebacker Zach Thompson left the game in the second half and was tested for a concussion. … Harbaugh mentioned wide receiver Daniel Brown and linebacker Brennen Beyer as practice squad candidates.