When Jon Beason returns to the Panthers lineup in Week 7, he'll be back at middle linebacker, according to a report from the Charlotte Observer. The three-time Pro-Bowler missed Sunday's game against the Seahawks with shoulder and knee injuries; he said he aimed to stay in the middle when he returns after the bye week:
“That’s what’s been communicated to me, so I’m sticking with that,” Beason said Monday. “I’ve been playing the Mike thus far, and I don’t anticipate anything different.”
Rookie Luke Kuechly started in Beason's place and had one of his best games with 11 tackles and an interception. Kuechly, a first-round draft pick out of Boston College, set NCAA tackling records as a middle linebacker but said he doesn't mind moving to the weakside where he played before Beason's injury:
"“Nah,” Kuechly said. “We’ll see what happens in the bye week. It doesn’t really matter too much to me.”Beason holds the Panthers' top three single-season records in tackles. He suffered a season-ending injury to his Achilles during Week 1 of 2011 and has had nagging injuries throughout the first few weeks of 2012.