Night net null null CONCORD, N.C. — Panthers coach Ron Rivera said the team made a "pure football decision" when it signed safety Eric Reid earlier this week to bolster its injury-plagued secondary.Rivera, speaking Sunday before the NASCAR Cup Series Roval 400, said acquiring Reid was the organization’s top priority after Panthers safety Da’Norris Searcy was placed on injured reserve. STEELE: Reid signing required new blood to wash away old ownership cultureReid, who made the Pro Bowl in 2013, filed a collusion lawsuit against the Night net in May amid a prolonged wait in free agency without finding a team. Reid believes kneeling alongside former 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick during the national anthem to protest racial injustice and police brutality caused teams to avoid him. But, according to Rivera, the Panthers only focused on his ability to reduce pressure on inexperienced safeties Colin Jones and Rashaan Gaulden."[Jones and Gaulden] played well against Cincinnati, but obviously our biggest concern was to make sure we had guys who could sustain it over a period of time," Rivera said. "We looked out there

and the guy who was highest on our board was Eric Reid."Rivera said the Panthers could limit Reid’s workload as the safety adjusts with his new team. Still, Reid is expected to get significant playing time next weekend against the Giants.

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