Eric Reid kept both his collusion case against the National Football League (NFL) and former teammate Colin Kaepernick’s kneeling protest against anti-Black police violence alive after he signed with the Carolina Panthers this season. Now, his supporters wonder if he’s being punished for his actions.

Panthers beat reporter Marcel Louis-Jacques of The Charlotte Observer tweeted on Sunday (November 25) that Reid took a league-mandated random drug test after the game that day. Reid told Louis-Jacques that it was his sixth test since signing with the Panthers two months ago.

“This is supposed to be a random system,” Reid said. “It doesn’t feel very random.” 

According to the league and NFL Players Association’s latest performance-enhancing drug protocol, a computer program and independent administrator randomly selects ten players on each team for drug testing every week. USA Today reports that individual players have only about 0.2 percent chance of being chosen for testing as often as Reid has in the past eight weeks.

Reid did not outright accuse the league of punishing his activism with these tests. But many commentators have condemned it as retaliation for his ongoing protest and support of racial justice causes.


As of press time, there have been no official responses from the Panthers, the NFL or the NFL Players Association.