January 9, 2019 / 4:00 PM / 5 months ago

Reid not targeted for additional testing: statement

(Reuters) - Carolina Panthers safety Eric Reid was not targeted nor was there any impropriety in his selection for drug testing, said the National Football League and NFL Players Association in a joint statement on Wednesday.

FILE PHOTO: Carolina Panthers safety Eric Reid kneels during the national anthem at FirstEnergy Stadium Dec 9, 2018; Cleveland, OH, USA. Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

The NFL and NFLPA requested that the independent administrator of the league’s drug-testing program investigate Reid’s claims that he was “randomly” chosen for testing seven times in an 11 week span during the regular season.

Reid, 27, was previously at the San Francisco 49ers where he and Colin Kaepernick refused to stand during the U.S. national anthem in protest of racial inequality and police treatment of African-Americans.

Based on the collective bargaining agreement, drug testing is conducted by an independent laboratory with 10 players’ names chosen at random by a computer each week.

Despite the miniscule odds, highlighted by Reid last month, the report submitted to the NFL and NFLPA found no impropriety.

Reid has never failed a test.

“We asked the independent administrator of the policy to review and produce a report on the claims of targeting,” said the NFL and NFLPA in a statement.

“The report also demonstrates that Mr. Reid’s tests were randomly generated via computer algorithm and that his selection for testing was normal when compared with the number of tests players were randomly selected for throughout the league during the time that he was on an active roster.

“There is no evidence of targeting or any other impropriety with respect to his selection for testing.”

Pointing to the statistical improbability of being tested seven times, Reid had hinted that he was targeted for additional tests after accusing the league of collusion.

The NFLPA filed a collusion grievance on Reid’s behalf in May alleging that NFL owners colluded to keep the hard-hitting safety from being signed for his anthem protest.

He was an unrestricted free agent from March, 2018 until September when he signed with the Panthers.

Kaepernick, who led the kneeling protest, remains out of the league.

Reporting by Steve Keating in Toronto. Editing by Christian Radnedge

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