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Edwards, Hixon out for Thursday night with Panthers No. 3 WR position up for grabs

The battle for the No. 3 wide receiver position will likely again be a two-man bout between David Gettis and Ted Ginn Jr. on Thursday night.

Panthers coach Ron Rivera does not expect Armanti Edwards, Domenik Hixon or Joe Adams to play in Thursday’s preseason game at Baltimore, leaving the position battle up for grabs while making the receiving depth chart even murkier with first cuts less than a week away.

“I’m trying to keep the big picture (in mind), but at the same time we’ve got a lot of athletes at receiver that are in the same boat I’m in – trying to make this team and get a roster spot,” Edwards said after Tuesday’s practice. “So it gets frustrating trying to think about it.”

Edwards injured his hamstring during the first preseason game against Chicago and hasn’t seen much of the practice field since. Hixon, who entered camp as the frontrunner for the No. 3 spot, hasn’t been in pads for nearly all of August with a hamstring strain.

“I tried to give it a go (Monday), and it just wasn’t there yet,” said Edwards, adding he didn’t want to aggravate the injury.

“I talked to Hixon about it. He’s been out longer than me with his. He’s been frustrated, too.”

Rivera referred to Edwards as the team’s training camp MVP, and the fourth-year receiver caught two balls for 38 yards against the Bears.

Adams continues to be sidelined with a calf strain, and with Ginn taking over the first-team returner spot, Adams could be fighting for a roster spot depending on if the Panthers keep five or six receivers this season.

Rivera said fullback Mike Tolbert (hamstring) and running back Jonathan Stewart (ankle) will miss the game.

SECOND JIMMY: According to a team source, quarterback Jimmy Clausen might play with the second-team offense in the third quarter on Thursday.

That doesn’t mean there’s a backup quarterback controversy, and the source said all indications are Derek Anderson remains the No. 2 on the depth chart.

But the team is interested in seeing what Clausen, Carolina’s starter from 2010, can do with a better offensive line in front of him. Rivera previously said Clausen has had a good camp, and Clausen is 7-for-13 for 73 yards, zero touchdowns and zero interceptions through two preseason games.

MAYBE BEASON: Jon Beason fully participated in his third consecutive practice in full pads Tuesday, and Rivera said it’s still possible the weakside linebacker plays against the Ravens.

Rivera liked Beason’s movement on the field as well as his communication with his defensive teammates, and middle linebacker Luke Kuechly said he’s hopeful Beason will join the starters Thursday.

“He’s another guy that’s a leader, another guy that knows what he’s doing,” he said of Beason, who’s returning from microfracture knee surgery. “He’s strong, he’s communicating, he knows what he’s supposed to be and it’s just fun to have him out there.”

CHARITABLE PANTHERS: Cam Newton and Thomas Davis are both looking to give back to area students this year.

Davis, who founded the Thomas Davis Defending Dream Foundation, spent his Monday night after practice packing 300 book bags with school supplies for underprivileged children in the area.

On Tuesday, the Cam Newton Foundation announced the “Super Cam Club,” which asks fans to pledge a certain amount of money – $5, $10, $20 or $250 – for every rushing and passing touchdown Newton has in the 2013 regular season.

“It’s an opportunity for fans to get involved and donate to my foundation,” Newton said. “You can do, what, $5, for every touchdown I score, rushing or passing. (It’s) another thing my foundation came up with to get the fans involved and prepare for a great season.”

More information on both foundations can be found at defendingdreams.org and camnewtonfoundation.org.

Staff writer Joseph Person contributed.

Jones: 704-358-5323; Twitter: @jjones9
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