Safety Eric Reid re-signs 3-year deal to return to Panthers

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — The Carolina Panthers on Monday filled a big need in the secondary by re-signing safety Eric Reid to a three-year deal that runs through the 2021 season.

Reid, 27, was set to become an unrestricted free agent after spending most of the 2018 season with the Panthers.

Carolina signed Reid after the third game last season when safety Da’Norris Searcy was placed on injured reserve with a concussion. He was available because no team signed the 2013 first-round pick by the San Francisco 49ers who became the first player to join quarterback Colin Kaepernick in kneeling during the national anthem to protest social injustice.

The NFL Players Association filed a collusion grievance against the NFL on Reid’s behalf in May. The grievance alleged team owners and the league, influenced by President Donald Trump, colluded to prevent Reid’s employment because of his protests.

“We always knew he was a solid football player, and he showed it to us,” coach Ron Rivera told the team website.

Reid started the final 13 games, finishing with 73 tackles, five passes defenses, one interception and one sack.

Reid said after a Dec. 17 loss to the New Orleans Saints that he had been selected for drug testing for the seventh time since signing with Carolina in late September. He implied that the tests were not random as stated in the collective bargaining agreement and that he was being targeted because of his collusion grievance against the NFL.

A joint investigation by the NFL and the NFLPA determined there was no evidence that he was targeted.

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