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Carolina Panthers sign NT Paul Soliai

By The Sports Xchange   |   March 16, 2016 at 12:26 AM
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Defensive tackle Paul Soliai agreed to a two-year deal with the Carolina Panthers.

Soliai was released by the Atlanta Falcons after resisting a slashed salary for 2016.

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Soliai can earn $7 million over two years. He completed just two years of the five-year, $32 million contract he signed with the Falcons as a free agent from the Dolphins in 2014. On that deal, his cap number for the upcoming season was $6.84 million.

The Panthers need depth behind starting tackle Star Lotulelei and Kawann Short, a 2015 Pro Bowl pick, and both can become free agents after this season.

The Panthers showed some interest in B.J. Raji, but the 29-year-old run-stuffer from the Packers said on Monday that he is taking a hiatus from the NFL.

"Paul gives us a veteran presence and I think his experience most certainly will add to what we have already with Kawann and Star. I think he'll be a good complement to them both," coach Ron Rivera said. "He's a solid run-defending big man, and at the same time he's a guy that can push the pocket and apply middle pressure on the quarterback. I also think his space-eating ability will allow our linebackers to run."

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