CHARLOTTE — The first wave of reinforcements for the Panthers defense arrived Wednesday.
Veteran safety Juston Burris was designated to return from injured reserve, and will practice for the first time since he went on IR in Week 4.
Burris suffered a groin injury against the Texans (the same game they lost Jaycee Horn and Christian McCaffrey).
Designating him for return starts the 21-day clock to activate him to the roster, which can happen at any time.
Adding him back lends some stability to the secondary, which is also close to getting nickel Myles Hartsfield back. The Panthers are also getting closer to getting linebacker Shaq Thompson back on the field.
The Panthers also signed defensive end Austin Larkin and wide receiver Devin Smith to the practice squad. Larkin was here last year, between the practice squad and nine games on the active roster. Smith is a former second-round pick of the Jets who was released by the Jaguars earlier this month.