The Texans have given Mallett the starting nod over Brian Hoyer, who started Houston's season-opening loss to Kansas City but was benched in the fourth quarter.
The NFL Network reported earlier Wednesday that the Texans are planning to go with Mallett over Hoyer.
Texans coach Bill O'Brien has been mum on the topic this week, saying as recently as Wednesday that he knows who will start against Carolina but that his decision won't be made public until Sunday.
Hoyer, who joined the Texans as a free agent this year, won the starting job after competing with Mallett throughout training camp. But Hoyer struggled in Sunday's loss to the Chiefs, completing 18-of-36 passes while committing two turnovers.
Mallett played well after replacing Hoyer, orchestrating two scoring drives and prompting O'Brien to acknowledge after the game that he was uncertain who would start under center in Week 2.
ESPN.com Texans reporter Tania Ganguli contributed to this report.
Reports: Texans to start QB Mallett against Panthers
ESPN NFL Insiders Ed Werder, Adam Caplan and Mark Dominik discuss the media reports that Texans coach Bill O'Brien is planning on starting QB Ryan Mallett over Brian Hoyer against the Panthers.
Schiano believes Texans can't go back to Brian Hoyer at QB
The NFL Live crew discusses reports that the Houston Texans have named QB Ryan Mallett their starter against the Carolina Panthers.