Former 49ers safety Eric Reid has filed a collusion grievance against the NFL, Dan Graziano of ESPN.com tweets. He adds that Reid has hired attorney Mark Geragos, who has also represented Colin Kaepernick. In a statement, the NFLPA expressed support for Reid and indicated that the union will also explore other avenues in the legal process to support his fight.
Reid entered free agency as one of the best safeties available, but there hasn’t been much of a market for him so far. The NFL veteran personally believes that his participation in anthem protests has kept him from finding work.
“The notion that I can be a great signing for your team for cheap, not because of my skill set, but because I’ve protested systemic oppression, is ludicrous. If you think is, then your mindset is part of the problem too,” Reid tweeted in March.
Before the start of free agency, I ranked Reid as the 23rd best player available on our top 50 list with the caveat that Reid’s protest participation could hurt him. That does appear to be the case, as lesser free agents at his position have already found NFL homes for 2018. However, it should also be noted that Reid is not the only talented safety who is out of work. Kenny Vaccaro and Tre Boston are also floating in free agent limbo despite years of starting experience.
For his part, Reid believes that football evaluators are interested in signing him, but owners of teams are standing in the way of a deal. It’s unclear how Reid’s legal action will impact his bid to land with a club.
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.