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Panthers bring back LB Connor, add G Bond

AP - Sports

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) -- The Carolina Panthers signed free-agent linebacker Dan Connor, and added guard Travis Bond off the Minnesota Vikings' practice squad.

The team released defensive tackle Sione Fua and placed cornerback James Dockery on injured reserve with a shoulder injury to make room on the 53-man roster.

The 6-foot-2, 240-pound Connor has now come full circle after being selected in the third round by the Panthers in 2008.

''I'm very excited to return,'' said Connor, who spent four seasons in Carolina.

The former Penn State linebacker played 42 games with the Panthers, starting 19 before signing a free agent contact with the Dallas Cowboys in 2012. He played in one game this season for the New York Giants before being placed on the injured reserve list with a neck injury.

The Giants released him from the injured reserve list Nov. 4.

Two people familiar with the deal say Connor agreed to a one-year contract. The people spoke to The Associated Press on Wednesday on condition of anonymity because terms of the deal were not announced.

Connor's best season came in 2011 when he had 75 tackles with the Panthers.

The 6-foot-6, 330-pound Bond was a seventh-round pick by the Vikings this season after attending North Carolina.

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AP NFL website www.pro32.ap.org

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