CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) -It's come to this for the Panthers: Undrafted rookie Matt Moore, with the team since September, could start Sunday against the Falcons if Vinny Testaverde's Achilles tendon doesn't improve.
Testaverde had practiced two straight days, but was held out of Friday's workout because he again felt pain in his right Achilles tendon and was listed as questionable.
David Carr, Carolina's other veteran quarterback, practiced for the first time this week, but was ruled out as he continues to recover from a concussion he had against Tennessee.
Moore's backup might be former UCLA teammate Drew Olson, who was signed to the practice squad Tuesday and has never thrown a pass in the NFL.
``I walk in here the same way you guys walk in here,'' said coach John Fox, whose team has had five injuries to four quarterbacks since the preseason. ``My parking space just may be a little closer.''
Earlier this week it appeared that Testaverde, who turns 44 next week, would start against the Falcons. He sat out last Sunday's loss to Tennessee with the Achilles tendon he first injured against Indianapolis on Oct. 28.
On Wednesday, Testaverde said he felt great. He practiced again Thursday, but something happened overnight.
``I wouldn't say it's a setback,'' Fox said. ``It was a little sore and we just decided to rest him.''
Fox wasn't taking chances with Carr.
``It's a little bit different environment practicing than playing,'' the coach said.
Carr is also not completely healthy from a back injury that forced the team to sign Testaverde, who started four days later against Arizona and became the oldest starting quarterback to win an NFL game.
Carr had taken over for Jake Delhomme, who was lost to a season-ending elbow injury in Week 3. Brett Basanez, projected to be the third-string QB in the preseason, is out for the year with a wrist injury.
So if Testaverde doesn't improve, Moore could be under center Sunday.
Undrafted out of Oregon State after transferring from UCLA, Moore was cut by Dallas in the preseason. The Panthers signed him in September and he's played briefly in three games, completing three of seven passes with one interception.
``I've had confidence in every guy we've sent out there, from Jake all the way to Vinny with three days' practice,'' Fox said. ``I think everybody on the team and everybody on the coaching staff has confidence in whoever goes out there.''
If Moore has to start, the Panthers would likely have to sign Olson to the active roster Saturday to be his backup. Olson, who beat out Moore as the starter at UCLA, spent last season on Baltimore's practice squad. He was out of the league until the Panthers called Tuesday.
Olson was brought in to run the scout team this week, but Fox said they have also taught Olson some of the Panthers' offense.
As had happened so many times this season, Fox left the practice field Friday with no idea who his starting quarterback will be.
``I'm not being evasive,'' Fox said. ``Honestly, it's day to day.''
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