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Panthers sign Griffin, Love to bolster defensive depth

Christopher Hanewinckel / USA TODAY Sports

The Carolina Panthers added a pair of free agents on the defensive side of the ball Tuesday, signing safety Michael Griffin and defensive tackle Kyle Love to one-year contracts.

Griffin provides some insurance and all-important veteran experience on the back end of Carolina's defense, presumably filling a backup role after Dean Marlowe was placed on injured reserve last week.

The former first-round pick started 133 games across nine seasons with the Tennessee Titans from 2007-2015. He initially landed with the Minnesota Vikings as a free agent in March, but a preseason injury sent him to injured reserve and he was later released with a settlement.

Love rejoins the Panthers after recording three sacks in 15 appearances in 2015. Adding a familiar face to the interior defensive line rotation will be important for Carolina with first-round pick Vernon Butler set to miss several weeks after suffering a high ankle sprain.

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