Charlotte, NC - When and if quarterback Rodney Peete is healthy, he will be the Panthers starting quarterback when the team returns from its bye week or after that, according to head coach John Fox.
"If Rodney Peete is healthy, he will be the starting quarterback," said Fox.
Fox thinks that Peete is making some progress but he is not saying for sure that Peete will be ready when the Panthers come back after the bye week.
"He has made some good progress, but there is a big difference from being out there in full gear when everybody is trying to get you," said Fox.
Peete will do some light throwing this week but hasn't been cleared to participate in full-contact drills. He had surgery two weeks ago to repair a torn meniscus in his knee.
Fox said if Peete can't play against the Saints, then he should be ready the following week against Tampa Bay.
If Peete can't go against the Saints then the Panthers will again turn to quarterback Chris Weinke for the starting job.
Fox was unhappy with the team's overall passing game.
"We struggled at times. Most of it was in the passing game. For the number of people they were putting in the box I thought we were effective running the football. If I had a criticism, it was our passing game and not just the offensive line," said Fox.
Fox wants to get more production from the offense and thinks that with Peete coming back from injury that he can help turn the team around.
"We have to get more productivity on offense," Fox said. "We've had poor throws to drops to poor protection. We need to clean our productivity up offensively. This week will give us an opportunity to get some of those areas cleaned up from a repetition standpoint."