Brady HendersonESPN3 minutes to read
SEATTLE – Bobby Wagner is back where he built his Hall of Fame resume.
The free agent quarterback has agreed to a one-year, $7 million deal to return to the Seattle Seahawks, a source told ESPN’s Adam Schefter on Saturday.
The move unites the Seahawks with the greatest defensive player in franchise history and fills a huge need on the linebacker team. He notes that the fences have been mended after his chaotic departure last season.
The news was broken by Seahawks safety Quandre Diggs, who has been publicly teasing Wagner’s return since Wagner and the Los Angeles Rams agreed to part ways earlier last month.
General manager John Schneider said prior to the start of free agency that he and head coach Pete Carroll had spoken to Wagner about a possible return. On Thursday, Schneider told Seattle Sports 710-AM that the two sides remain in talks.
“We’ve been talking with Bobby, and what I can tell you is we’ll see what happens, we’ll see how it goes,” Schneider said. “Everyone knows how much we respect Bobby… He had a great season this past year. We will continue to talk to him and keep in touch and see how it goes.”
Wagner is the second former Seahawks player to join the team since the start of free agency, joining defensive tackle Jaran Reid. Seattle’s moves thus far have largely focused on bolstering the Front Seven that have struggled mightily in 2022 while moving into a new Front 3-4 without their longtime captain, Wagner.
In addition to Wagner and Reed, the Seahawks signed former Denver Broncos defensive back Dre’Mont Jones to a three-year, $51.53 million deal. They released defensive linemen Shelby Harris, Quinton Jefferson, and Al Woods.
The Rams’ release of Wagner on March 15 came just one year after the nine-time linebacker signed a five-year contract with the team. Sources told Schefter that Wagner and the Rams had mutually agreed to separate.
Wagner, 32, joined the Rams after signing a five-year, $50 million deal with $20 million in guarantees on March 31, 2022. He earned second-team All-Pro honors after posting 140 tackles, a career-high 6 sacks, 2 interceptions and 5 passes defensed while starting all 17 games. Pro Football Focus ranked Wagner the best quarterback in the NFL last season.
It was the ninth time in 11 NFL seasons that Wagner was named an All-Pro (six times on the first team, three on the second). This came after Wagner was released by the Seahawks last March after 10 seasons with the team. He publicly and directly expressed his displeasure to the team’s decision makers about the way he had internalized their plans moving forward before he had heard it from them.
The Seahawks have pitched Cody Barton to a starting inside linebacker role alongside Jordyn Brooks. Barton signed with the Washington Chiefs in free agency after an up and down season. Brooks tore his ACL in December, jeopardizing his preparation to start the 2023 season. Seattle has signed former Pittsburgh Steelers player Devin Bush to a one-year, $3.5 million deal.
Wagner has 1,523 tackles, 29.5 sacks, 13 interceptions, and 6 forced fumbles in his career.
ESPN’s Nick Wagner contributed to this report.
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