The Los Angeles Rams are releasing eight-time Pro Bowl linebacker Bobby Wagner after one season with the team.
Los Angeles releasing Wagner into free agency is reportedly a mutual decision, according to NFL insider Adam Schefter.
Rams and nine-time All-Pro LB Bobby Wagner mutually agreed Thursday to part ways, sources tells ESPN.
Rams needs more cap space and Wagner wants to win. He will now be a notable part of this year’s free-agent class. pic.twitter.com/1A3KvudOhj
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) February 23, 2023
Wagner started in all 17 regular season games for the Rams in 2022, tallied 140 total tackles and had a career-best six sacks, according to Pro Football Reference.
The 32-year-old was arguably the best player on Los Angeles’ defense last season despite being the oldest in age. Although Wagner had a good season, the Rams finished the year with a record of 5-12 and missed the playoffs. (RELATED: Super Bowl Winning Head Coach Sean McVay To Return To The Sidelines After Contemplating Retirement)
With Wagner entering free agency again, I hope he joins a club that gives him a legitimate opportunity at winning another Super Bowl. There are two teams that instantly come to my mind when I think about where he should go next to accomplish this.
Those two teams are the Seattle Seahawks and the Kansas City Chiefs.
Wagner should think about heading back to Seattle because first of all, who doesn’t love a good story of reconciliation? Wagner helped the Seahawks win their one and only championship in 2014 when the Seahawks destroyed the Denver Broncos 43-8 in Super Bowl XLVIII. He tallied 10 total tackles against Denver, according to ESPN, while his defense put on the performance of a lifetime against Peyton Manning’s top ranked offense that averaged close to 40 points per game during the 2013-2014 regular season.
He began carving out his Hall of Fame worthy career with the Seahawks, and a return to the ballclub could vastly improve their defense that struggled mightily at times last year. Seattle allowed the third most rushing yards per game in the NFL last year, according to ESPN. They allowed over 150 yards on average each week. They also allowed the eighth most points in the league. Despite it all, they still managed to somehow make it to the postseason.
Wagner would seemingly fit right back in with Pete Carroll’s defense, as he would with any team in the NFL. Wagner would stop the bleeding when it comes to stuffing the run and spark life back into Seattle’s defense. Considering how the Seahawks are fresh off of a postseason appearance, they seem to be not too far from being back in the championship picture. A player like Wagner could help Seattle become a contender once again if both sides were to be interested in a reunion.
On the flipside, Wagner should consider signing with the Chiefs to well … give himself the best opportunity there is in the league to win another ring.
It would be the easiest way to do it considering how the Chiefs are currently the reigning Super Bowl champions, but it would surely give Wagner a golden opportunity at winning it all again before his career comes to an end.
As long as the Chiefs have Patrick Mahomes and Andy Reid, Kansas City will continue knocking on the door of winning Super Bowls. With Wagner getting older in age, I wouldn’t blame him for “ring chasing.” With how well Wagner was playing a season ago, I’m sure Reid and Kansas City’s front office would welcome him in with open arms.
Wagner is undoubtedly one of the best free agents in the NFL right now. Considering Wagner’s track record of playing very elite football, I’m sure he’ll be signed relatively quickly once free agency begins on March 15.
Only time will tell where Wagner plays next, but wherever he goes I’m sure he’ll make an instant impact.