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Sports >  Seattle Seahawks

Former Seahawks All-Pro linebacker Bobby Wagner stays in NFC West, signs 5-year deal with Los Angeles Rams

March 31, 2022 Updated Thu., March 31, 2022 at 5:20 p.m.

Seattle Seahawks linebacker Bobby Wagner pauses during the team's NFL football game against the Houston Texans on Dec. 12, 2021, in Houston.  (Associated Press)
Seattle Seahawks linebacker Bobby Wagner pauses during the team's NFL football game against the Houston Texans on Dec. 12, 2021, in Houston. (Associated Press)
Bob Condotta Seattle Times

Seahawks fans will get a chance to see Bobby Wagner at Lumen Field in 2022 again after all.

Wagner, released by Seattle on March 8, has agreed to a deal with the Los Angeles Rams, the team announced.

His good friend and former Seattle teammate Richard Sherman shared the news first and the Rams officially confirmed it, tweeting that Wagner had agreed to terms.

“The rich get richer!” Sherman tweeted. “Lose future HOF (Von Miller) and gain future HOF (Bobby Wagner).” Sherman tweeted that the Ravens made a last-minute push to get Wagner but that “the Reigning champs were too good to pass up.”

According to several reports, Wagner, who is serving as his own agent, will get a five-year contract worth $50 million with incentives that could push it to $65 million. Full details on the contract were not immediately available.

Wagner, 31, was released by the Seahawks heading into the final year of a three-year deal with Seattle that paid him an average of $18 million. The move saved the Seahawks $16.6 million against the salary cap in 2022.

Wagner made the most tackles in Seahawks history during his 10-year run with the team — 1,383 — after being taken in the second round of the 2012 draft out of Utah State. Wagner also made eight Pro Bowls, including in 2021, and six times was named as an first team All-Pro.

Signing with the Rams means he gets to try to help LA repeat as Super Bowl champs, gets to return to his home — he was born in Los Angeles and went to high school in Ontario, California — and will get to play the Seahawks twice a season. Dates for games have not yet been set with the schedule expected to be released in May.

In that regard, he somewhat follows the footsteps of Sherman, who after his release signed with the 49ers, near where he had gone to college at Stanford.

Seattle is turning its linebacking duties now to the duo of Jordyn Brooks and Cody Barton, who played the inside spots the last two games of the 2021 season after Wagner suffered a sprained knee on the first play of the second-to-last game of the year against Detroit.

The Dallas Cowboys had also been reported interested in Wagner, and he had visited both the Rams and Ravens.

Wagner is expected to team with second-year player Ernest Jones at the inside spots in the Rams’ 3-4 defense. The Rams have not re-signed Troy Reeder, who started 10 games for the Rams at inside linebacker in 2021.

Wagner’s release from Seattle came with some controversy after he tweeted “Crazy part about all this. I played there for 10 years & I didn’t even hear it from them that I wasn’t coming back.”

Both head coach Pete Carroll and general manager John Schneider later apologized, something Schneider reiterated this week at the NFL league meetings saying “I wish I would’ve handled things a little bit better with the communication and all that. I have so much respect for him.”

But Schneider had also made clear the team was moving on with Brooks and Barton.

And 24 days after his release by the Seahawks, Wagner finally has a new home.

Among those congratulating Wagner on social media was Russell Wilson, tweeting: “Congrats @Bwagz! You deserve it all Legend! As we always say, “Don’t get bored with consistency.” Love you forever bro!”

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