Seahawks LB Bobby Wagner approaching another milestone

Nov 16, 2023, 1:33 PM | Updated: 1:33 pm

Seattle Seahawks Bobby Wagner...

Seattle Seahawks LB Bobby Wagner celebrates a stop against Washington on Nov. 12, 2023. (Steph Chambers/Getty Images)

(Steph Chambers/Getty Images)

RENTON, Wash. (AP) — At this point of his career, Seattle Seahawks linebacker Bobby Wagner has garnered enough accolades that his resume is fully burnished.

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He has plenty of numbers that back his place as one of the best defensive players of this generation. But Wagner can reach another career milestone on Sunday when the Seahawks face the only other team he’s played for in his career, the Los Angeles Rams.

Wagner needs five tackles to become just the third player in league history to get at least 100 tackles in 12 consecutive seasons. The others: London Fletcher and Derrick Brooks.

Wagner noted Wednesday that he was able to chat with Fletcher — now part of the broadcast crew for Washington — before the Seahawks and Commanders played last week. Wagner didn’t know at the time how close he was to joining Fletcher in rare company.

“Being able to have a conversation with him like that was pretty cool with just the amount of respect that I have for him,” Wagner said. “You just want to be viewed that same way whenever you walk away from the game.”

Despite being in his 12th season and now 33 years old, Wagner doesn’t seem to have lost a step. After his one-year stint with the Rams, he has seamlessly slid back into the Seahawks lineup and perhaps played more than anyone expected.

In seven of Seattle’s nine games this season, Wagner has been on the field for every snap. Against the New York Giants in Week 4 and versus Baltimore in Week 9, Wagner received a break because both games were blowouts.

Not that he was happy about it, at least the latest instance.

“I wasn’t, just because we didn’t play well,” Wagner said of the 37-3 loss to Baltimore two weeks ago. “We were losing by a lot and you just want to go out there and finish the game. It’s already a bad loss. You just want to finish it.”

There were no guarantees about how much Wagner would play when he signed a one-year deal to return to the Seahawks. All Seattle knew is there was a need after Jordyn Brooks suffered a major knee injury late last season.

Brooks returned in time for the start of the regular season and the duo went back to play similar positions to what they did in 2020 and 2021 before Wagner’s one year away.

“I didn’t know, I wasn’t sure how that was going to work out,” Seattle coach Pete Carroll said of Wagner’s snap counts. “I figured that’s the only way he would look at it, but we needed to just see. We’re past halfway and he’s played almost every play so far, more power to him.”

Because Wagner spent only one season with the Rams, this week’s return to Los Angeles doesn’t feel dramatically different than any of the trips he made previously with the Seahawks. He’s more concerned in seeing that Seattle has made marked improvements from when the teams met in the season opener and the Seahawks were thumped 30-13.

“I think it’s an opportunity for us to just continue to keep getting better and continue to keep improving on the areas that we need to improve on, especially defensively,” Wagner said. “There’s a lot of areas that we still need to improve on and that game was so far away, so we’re not that team and we’ll show it.”

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