Panthers safety Eric Reid receives seventh ‘random’ drug test in 11 weeks

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After the Panthers’ Monday Night Football loss, Eric Reid found a small slip of paper tucked in his locker.  It was a familiar sight for the safety who had five tackles and two assists in the 12-9 loss to the Saints. Reid had again been chosen “randomly” for a drug test. By Reid’s count that makes seven tests in 11 weeks.

Reid was first given a drug test in his physical after the Panthers signed him in late September. Since then the outspoken Reid has been chosen at random by the NFL six other times, a number that seems statistically impossible.

Reid says in the video above, “I’ve been here 11 weeks, I’ve been drug-tested seven times. That has to be statistically impossible. I’m not a mathematician, but there’s no way that’s random.”

When it comes to drug testing, the NFL uses a computer to select ten players weekly from each team randomly. The players eligible to be tested include the 53-man active roster, the nine players on reserve and the team’s ten player practice-squad. 72 players in total. Reid’s been on the Panther’s team for 11 weeks and has taken the drug test six times, aside from his mandatory test when he was signed. To be sure on the math, I reached out to my aunt who’s a collegiate Math professor and has been teaching statistics for more than seven years.

Using a binomial formula,  we calculated the probability the Reid would be randomly chosen six of his eleven weeks and came up with a number .0016. That’s 16/10,000 or .16% chance of being selected. According to National Geographic, you have a better chance of being struck by lightning in your lifetime than Reid had of being chosen six times for a drug test.

It’s no secret why the NFL might target Reid in drug tests, as Reid has been by Colin Kaepernick’s side and advocating for him and their cause all season long. Reid has continued to kneel in protest of the treatment of the black community by police officers and even wore cleats supporting Kaepernick and the history of protest on Monday night.

Reid, who along with Colin Kaepernick,  is suing the NFL for collusion. He said the frequent drug tests will be “noted” in the grievance suit.