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LB Blackburn says he'll sign with Panthers

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Free agent linebacker Chase Blackburn announced on Twitter that he will sign with the Carolina Panthers.

"Thanks for 8 great yrs @Giants. But it's time for the #nextChapter @Panthers. Excited for the new opportunity," he wrote on his Twitter account, @Blackburn5793.

Blackburn, 29, enjoyed his most productive pro season in 2012. After starting just 21 total games his first seven years with the New York Giants, spending most of his time on special teams, he started all 15 games he played last year. Blackburn posted career highs with 98 tackles, three sacks, six passes defensed and four forced fumbles, and he added an interception.

He fills a vacancy in the Panthers' linebacker corps. Last weekend, James Anderson signed a free agent deal with the Chicago Bears after being released by Carolina earlier in the month.

Blackburn signed with the Giants as an undrafted free agent deal out of Akron in 2005.

The Giants added a replacement for Blackburn on Saturday, giving former Cowboys linebacker Dan Connor a one-year contract.
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