Bobby Wagner Reaches Free Agency: Will He Return Home to the Seattle Seahawks?
On Thursday, the Los Angeles Rams and star linebacker Bobby Wagner agreed to mutually part ways, only one year into a five-year contract at $50 million. This news means a lucrative year for Wagner to hit free agency again and cash in on another payday. Wagner is 32 years old and played in his 11th season in 2022, producing 140 combined tackles, a career-best six sacks, five pass breakups, and two interceptions. He was named to the 2022 All-Pro second team and was also rated as the top middle linebacker in the NFL by Pro Football Focus.
Wagner will officially become a free agent in March and is expected to garner significant interest from around the league. As a post-June 1 designation, the Rams will be able to spread out Wagner’s dead cap penalty over two years instead of one, saving them $8 million against the 2023 salary cap instead of the $5 million that was expected.
While Wagner is 32, he’s still one of the best in the league at his position and was voted 2nd team All-Pro. Now, the question is, will the Seattle Seahawks bring him home? Wagner was released by the Seahawks last March 8, and later that month signed a $50 million deal worth up to $65 million with the Rams.
The Seahawks need help on defense, and could use a veteran presence in the middle of the field. Given that Cody Barton is to become an unrestricted free agent and Jordyn Brooks is recovering from a torn ACL, the Seahawks now have another need to address – the linebacker position.
Wagner played in Seattle for his first 10 seasons and is arguably the best defensive player in franchise history. He could be a great addition to the team and provide leadership in the locker room. The team is also in a good situation in terms of cap space, having the eighth-most in the league.
It remains to be seen whether the two sides can come to an agreement. But one thing is for sure, Wagner’s release from the Rams opens up a whole new set of possibilities.
0. “Los Angeles Rams parting ways with All-Pro LB Bobby Wagner, per report” 247Sports, 23 Feb. 2023, https://247sports.com/Article/Los-Angeles-Rams-parting-ways-with-All-Pro-LB-Bobby-Wagner-per-report-205215279/
1. “Bobby Wagner released by Rams: How much money is LA saving?” Turf Show Times, 23 Feb. 2023, https://www.turfshowtimes.com/2023/2/23/23612725/bobby-wagner-release-rams-salary-cap-2023
2. “Rams, Bobby Wagner part ways one year after signing $50M deal: report” Fox News, 24 Feb. 2023, https://www.foxnews.com/sports/rams-bobby-wagner-part-ways-one-year-signing-50m-deal-report
3. “Bobby Wagner released by Rams; Jeffery Simmons recruits him to Titans” Music City Miracles, 23 Feb. 2023, https://www.musiccitymiracles.com/2023/2/23/23612655/bobby-wagner-released-by-rams-jeffery-simmons-recruits-him-titans
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6. “NFL 2023: Bobby Wagner becomes surprise free agent after mutually agreeing to part ways with Los Angeles Rams …” Fox Sports, 24 Feb. 2023, https://www.foxsports.com.au/nfl/nfl-2023-bobby-wagner-becomes-surprise-free-agent-after-mutually-agreeing-to-part-ways-with-los-angeles-rams-team-news-free-agency-trade-rumours/news-story/581be50cdc18affef7553c169222f7d2
7. “Seattle Seahawks free agency news: Reunion with Bobby Wagner?” 12th Man Rising, 23 Feb. 2023, https://12thmanrising.com/2023/02/23/seahawks-news-reunion-bobby-wagner/
8. “3 potential landing spots for former Seahawks LB Bobby Wagner” 12th Man Rising, 24 Feb. 2023, https://12thmanrising.com/2023/02/24/seahawks-bobby-wagner-landing-spots-2/
9. “Bobby Wagner's Top Potential Landing Spots After Reported Rams Release” Bleacher Report, 7 Nov. 2022, https://bleacherreport.com/articles/10066663-bobby-wagners-top-potential-landing-spots-after-reported-rams-release