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Panthers safety Eric Reid apologizes to Patriots tight end Ben Watson for late hit

Panthers safety Eric Reid (kneeling) said he was not deliberately trying to hurt Ben Watson in last Thursday’s game.kathryn riley/Getty Images/Getty Images

Carolina Panthers defensive back Eric Reid said he’s apologized for his late hit on Patriots tight end Ben Watson in last Thursday’s preseason game at Gillette Stadium.

Reid — who said after the game he wasn’t deliberately trying to injure Watson — told reporters Tuesday he texted Watson after the game to apologize for the hit, which happened in the first quarter and left Watson in concussion protocol.

Reid said he received a text back from the New England tight end, but wouldn’t elaborate on the content. Reid added that he hasn’t heard from the league as to whether he’d be fined, but he wouldn’t be surprised if he was.


It’s important to note the players have engaged in fundamental disagreements before, including a back-and-forth on Twitter this month. For his part, Reid said the hit had nothing to do with the off-field flap.

Watson’s status for Thursday’s preseason finale remains in doubt. If he does not play against the Giants, it would be the last time he’d be on the field until at least Week 5, as he is facing a four-game suspension to start the regular season because of a failed drug test.

Christopher Price can be reached at Follow him on Twitter@cpriceNFL.