Mark Jones, in last night for a physical to have another shot at being the Panthers' return specialist, failed the physical and remains a free agent. Having had some hamstring problems, the physical showed a remaining muscle tear that hasn't healed.
Jones vowed for a return by next week, but more likely Jones is a plan B for Carolina. The team would certainly not want to wait a few weeks for their returner situation to improve.
This afternoon Coach Fox said on Sirius Radio that the team would definitely use a "veteran returner", noting alternatives Chris Gamble and Steve Smith. While there's an offhand chance that they turn to one of that pair, they seem to look toward outside figures.
With that said, the Panthers seem to turn next to Dexter Jackson, the former Tampa and Appalachian State WR (not the former Super Bowl MVP safety for the Buccaneers). The 5'9, 180 lb receiver and return specialist was a 2nd round pick for the Buccaneers, and his 4.3 speed does show promise. However, he never seriously played for the Bucs, and returned 14 kickoffs for an average of 23.4 yards and added 20 punt returns for a 4.9-yard average.