CHARLOTTE — The Panthers will have two familiar faces back on the practice field Wednesday afternoon.
The team designated running back Christian McCaffrey and punter Joseph Charlton to return from injured reserve.
That starts the 21-day clock for them to begin practicing as they return from their injuries. The team can then make the decision to activate them at any time during that window.
Both went on IR in Week 6. For McCaffrey, that came after his previous hamstring injury suffered in Week 3 didn't respond well to practice. Charlton suffered a back injury.
The Panthers will be able to watch them practice this week to see if they're able to play against the Patriots.
The team currently has three spots available on the 53-man roster, which leaves room to activate either or both of them. Safeties Juston Burris and Myles Hartsfield have also been designated to return, along with guard Pat Elflein.
The Panthers still have punter Lachlan Edwards on the practice squad. He punted last week and could be elevated again this week if Charlton isn't ready to go.
The Panthers also made another practice squad move, signing defensive tackle Treyvon Hester. To make room for him on the practice squad, they released offensive lineman Aaron Monteiro. Hester was most recently with the Bills, one of five teams he's spent time with. He was originally a seventh-round pick of the Raiders from Toledo. On Tuesday, they added quarterback Josh Love to the practice squad, releasing wide receiver Devin Smith.