Former 49ers safety Eric Reid has filed a grievance against the NFL alleging collusion by owners to keep him from playing in the league, reports ESPN.
Reid is being represented by attorney Mark Geragos, the same lawyer working with Colin Kaepernick in his grievance against the NFL. Both players became the topic of controversy after deciding to kneel during the national anthem in protest of racial inequality and police brutality, and they’re presently unsigned free agents this offseason.
The grievance goes through an arbitration system as outlined in the collective bargaining agreement.
“Our union is aware that Eric Reid and his legal representatives filed a collusion claim, which will be heard through the arbitration process as spelled out in our collective bargaining agreement,” the NFL Players Association said in a statement. “Our union supports Eric and we are considering other legal options to pursue.”
The claims made by Reid are reportedly similar to those in a collusion grievance filed by Kaepernick in the fall of 2017. Several prominent figures, including commissioner Roger Goodell, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones and and Dolphins owner Stephen Ross, have been deposed as part of that case.
Reid, a first-round pick in the 2013 NFL Draft, played a key role in the 49ers’ secondary over the past five seasons. He made the Pro Bowl as a rookie in 2013 and started at least 10 games every season for San Francisco.
However, no teams have made offers to Reid since his rookie contract expired in the spring. He met with the Bengals in early April and the team reportedly asked him to commit to not kneeling during the anthem.