Odd man out: Hackett or Jarrett?

Dwayne Jarrett

The Panthers normally keep four receivers active on game day. Three are Steve Smith, Muhsin Muhammad and Mark Jones, the return man and No. 4 receiver. The other receiver (the No. 3 guy) will either be Dwayne Jarrett or D.J. Hackett depending on which way coach John Fox wants to go.

Jarrett has played well in Hackett's absence, but Hackett should be ready to go after the bye week. That means, if Fox sticks with his current game day plan, either Jarrett or Hackett will be inactive heading forward.

Jarrett was that guy for most of the first half of the season before Hackett's injury gave him a chance to get on the field. Jarrett has taken advantage of that and played well, coming up with two big catches in Sunday's win over Arizona.

"I just don't want to commit to anything yet because I don't know the answer yet," Fox said of the team's No. 3 receiver spot. "We will play the best 46 guys on game day."

When asked if Jarrett has closed the gap on Hackett, who started the season as the No. 3 receiver, Fox said, "He's definitely gotten better. I don't know about gaps, but Dwayne Jarrett needs to be concerned with Dwayne Jarrett and that's all.

"That is what is going to be the best for him. That is the way I like it. He has definitely improved. We have seen it in practice and you saw some signs of that yesterday with two very big plays and good catches."

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