Panthers sign free agent safety Eric Reid, known for kneeling during national anthem

Panthers sign free agent safety Eric Reid, known for kneeling during national anthem
The Carolina Panthers signed free agent safety Eric Reid to a one-year contract for the upcoming NFL season.

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - The Carolina Panthers signed free agent safety Eric Reid to a one-year contract for the upcoming NFL season.

Reid joins the team after playing his first five seasons with the San Francisco 49ers after being selected in the first round, 18th overall, in the 2013 NFL Draft.

“Eric has been a starting safety in the NFL and has played at a high level throughout his career,” general manager Marty Hurney said. “After we put Da’Norris Searcy on injured reserve, Ron (Rivera) and I discussed our options, and Eric was at the top of our list. He is a physical safety with good ball skills and play-making ability.”

Last season, Reid started 12 of 13 and registered 66 tackles, two interceptions, four passes defensed and one fumble recovery.

Reid played for LSU during his collegiate career. As a senion in 2012 he earned All-America honors and was named First-Team All-SEC.

Reid was one of the first players to kneel with former 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick during the national anthem in 2016, protesting social injustice and police brutality.

When Kaepernick went unsigned through October, 2017 after opting out of his contract the previous March, he filed a collusion grievance against league owners under the collective bargaining agreement, which argued that Kaepernick was being punished for his protest, the Charlotte Observer reports.

Reid became a free agent in the spring and filed a similar collusion grievance in May.

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