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Panthers sign WR Ginn


CHARLOTTE - The Panthers have signed unrestricted free agent Ted Ginn Jr., an elite return man and experienced pass-catcher who played for the San Francisco 49ers the past three seasons.

"We are excited to add Ted to our team," head coach Ron Rivera said. "He is an explosive player who could help us both on offense and in the return game."

In 2011, Ginn became the 12th player in NFL history to return a kickoff and punt for a touchdown in the same game. This past season, Ginn ranked third in the NFC with a 10.3-yard punt return average. He has three kickoff returns and three punt returns for touchdowns in his career with a career kickoff return average of 23.2 yards and a career punt return average of 11.0.

Ginn also can catch the ball, posting 161 receptions for 2,048 yards and six touchdowns during his career. Additionally, he has 27 rushes for 210 yards and two touchdowns. Originally selected ninth overall by the Miami Dolphins in the 2007 NFL Draft from Ohio State, Ginn was traded to the 49ers in 2010 following three seasons with the Dolphins.

Steve Smith and Brandon LaFell are established as starters for the Panthers at receiver, but Ginn, Armanti Edwards, Kealoha Pilares and Joe Adams all caught passes in 2012. David Gettis hopes to bounce back from an injury, and Lamont Bryant and James Shaw are hoping for a shot. Ginn, Adams, Pilares and Edwards all have ability in the return game.

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