AP Photo/Bob Leverone

CHARLOTTE – Now that Jon Beason is back on the practice field with the Panthers, Ron Rivera says the coaching staff is exploring creative ways to use the three-time Pro Bowl linebacker.

Beason practiced Monday for the second straight day, a positive sign for the six-year NFL veteran who is coming off microfracture surgery on his right knee and has been limited to only five games the past two seasons.

Carolina had concerns about how Beason’s knee would respond after his first padded practice on Sunday, but Beason says he “feels good” and didn’t experience any swelling in his knee.

Rivera says Beason will start at weakside linebacker in the base defense, but he’ll be looking for other ways to get him on the field in certain packages.