Carolina Panthers

With Testaverde feeling his age, Moore may start

CHARLOTTE -- The Carolina Panthers might end up starting rookie quarterback Matt Moore by default.

The team held 44-year-old starter Vinny Testaverde out of practice Wednesday so he could get a little rest. Since the other quarterback on the roster, David Carr, has been banished to the lowest rungs of the depth chart, that leaves Moore as the likely possibility to play Sunday against Seattle if Testaverde can't.

Coach John Fox said Testaverde wasn't hurt, just sore from the rigors of being a man of his age.

"Just rest," Fox said. "It's not a particular injury or anything, just the wear of the game."

Moore's appeared in parts of six games this season, completing 14-of-32 passes for 166 yards with no touchdowns and three interceptions. His rating's a ridiculous 21.1 and he admitted earlier this week he was frustrated with some of his misses against Jacksonville during his latest mop-up appearance.

"There were numerous throws I thought I should have hit, but I didn't," Moore said. "That bothers me."

If he did start, it would push the number of starting quarterbacks league-wide to 60 for the season. Adding new starters this week will be San Francisco (Shaun Hill), Chicago (Kyle Orton) and Washington (Todd Collins).

Moore would also be the Panthers' fourth starter, making them the only team in the league with that distinction.

"It's just kind of the way it's been every week," center Justin Hartwig said. "Most weeks, at the beginning of the week, we're not sure who the starter is going to be. We're rotating guys in and out of there, so we're not always sure.

"But I feel that we're getting enough reps with everybody that we'll be all right come Sunday."

• THE TRUTH REVEALED: Cornerback Richard Marshall said he wasn't trying to be divisive when he implored teammate Chris Harris to "Tell them the truth, Chris," while Harris was being asked about the lack of support from the offense after last week's 37-6 loss to the Jaguars.

Marshall didn't talk to reporters afterward, gone from his locker by the time they were finished talking to Harris.

"What I meant by that was, 'Tell them the truth, we're not playing a good team game,'" Marshall said. "We're losing. We're not playing good on offense or defense or special teams, and that's contributing to us losing.

"But the way whoever wrote it in the paper was like I was trying to bad-talk the team, and it wasn't like that. But they're trying to put it out there as if I was saying it in a bad way. I don't know who wrote it in the paper, but whoever did, next time come to me and ask me what I meant by that. Don't go write something in the paper that I didn't say."

It was mentioned to Marshall that efforts were made to locate him, but he was gone moments after making the remark. He replied that he was afraid he was going to be asked if he should be starting, since cornerback Chris Gamble had a rough outing, playing with a large cast over his surgically repaired thumb.

"Because lately, some media's been asking me if I feel like I should be starting, should I be doing this?" Marshall said. "I keep giving the same answer I've been giving everybody. When the coach feels like I should be starting, I'll start. I know after the game, somebody was going to ask me that, and I didn't want that question.

"I mean, when it's my time to start, I'll be starting, and until then, I'm just going to play my game and play my role on this team."

• EXTRA POINTS: Also held out of practice were wide receiver Keary Colbert (knee) and right guard Jeremy Bridges (tooth).

Colbert's been supplanted in the starting lineup by Drew Carter, who's opened the last two games. Bridges missed last week's game after his abscessed wisdom tooth flared up on him after eating the pre-game meal. He was replaced by Geoff Hangartner. ... Rookie wide receiver Dwayne Jarrett was back on the practice field after missing the previous two weeks. He had a sprained right MCL. ... San Francisco's depth chart has a familiar look these days. The 49ers signed former Panthers starter Chris Weinke as an emergency backup. They're down to one other healthy quarterback on the roster (Hill), with Alex Smith done for the year and Trent Dilfer taking a blow to the head last week.

The 49ers might also call up practice squader Drew Olson, who was in Charlotte briefly last month.