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The Carolina Panthers filled a void left at safety by Mike Mitchell's departure to the Pittsburgh Steelers. Strong safety Roman Harper was signed to a two-year deal worth $4.5 million. A $1.5 million signing bonus is included.
ESPN reports that Harper was cut by the New Orleans Saints in order to create more salary cap space. Harper played an important role in the Saints defense, making two Pro Bowl appearances in 2009 and 2010 and helping lead them to a Super Bowl in the 2009 season.
Harper has also made his mark as a pass rusher in the secondary with 17 sacks since 2006. This is the most among defensive backs in that time span.
Harper didn't play as much in the 2013 season, though, since he injured his knee. This caused him to miss seven games, but he managed to finish the season strong.
According to NBC Sports, Harper spent all eight years of his career in New Orleans. He is expected to bring a veteran leadership presence to the Panthers, who are coming off an NFC South championship.
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