5 Panthers players with work to do after Week 1 vs. NY Jets

(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Terrace Marshall Jr.
(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Terrace Marshall Jr. /
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Carolina Panthers
(Joseph Maiorana-USA TODAY Sports) Alex Erickson /

Alex Erickson – Carolina Panthers KR

Releasing David Moore just before the season left the Carolina Panthers short in the return game. Although Alex Erickson has been signed to the active roster, the jury is still well and truly out as to whether he can hold down the position long-term.

Erickson came in from the practice squad as the team’s primary kick returner in Week 1 against the New York Jets. He collected three kicks for 31 yards, including a long of 15 yards.

Not bad. But not great by any stretch of the imagination.

Carolina even gave D.J. Moore a punt return when it looked like there might be a chance to get it into the red zone, which amounted to only nine yards.

A returner is only as good as the blocking in front of him, which wasn’t exactly stellar, and Erickson might have a stiff task turning things around coming up against the New Orleans Saints this weekend.

It’s worth noting that Erickson is relatively new to the system in Carolina, so he can be forgiven for starting off a little slowly. However, those in power have shown a ruthless approach to recruitment and if things don’t pick up – and quickly – they won’t hesitate to find a better alternative.

That might be a little harsh. But the NFL is a cutthroat business.