The Los Angeles Rams made several big moves this offseason, including signing eight-time Pro Bowler Bobby Wagner to a five-year, $50 million contract.
Wagner was a surprising addition to the free-agent market after the Seattle Seahawks suddenly released him in March. While inside linebacker wasn’t exactly a position of need for the Rams, they couldn’t pass up the opportunity to add him to the roster.
While joining a new team can come with a learning curve, Wagner will be staying in the NFC West where he played the first 10 seasons of his career.
Despite having some familiarity with the division, the 32-year-old noted he is trying to learn the Rams’ culture and how to better understand his teammates, via Gary Klein of the L.A. Times:
“They had a way established way before I got here, so for me it’s my job to try and understand everybody that’s around and understand the way they’ve done things over the years, and just add a little bit of experience when needed,” Wagner said.
Wagner also praised the Rams coaching staff for keeping players accountable, which helps everyone stay on top of their game:
“The accountability is off the charts,” he said. “I think because you have that cohesiveness and everybody being close, it allows you to get checked when you need to get checked, and you don’t take it personally because you know the guys that’s checking you wants the best for you.
“That’s the symbol of a great team.”
Wagner, who is getting set to enter his 11th NFL season, has long been considered one of the best players at his position. In addition to his skills on the field, he is widely regarded as an excellent leader in the locker room.
Wagner accumulated a career-high 170 combined tackles in 16 games for the Seahawks this past season. Inside linebacker historically has been a weak position for the Rams, so the 31-year-old should immediately come in and become a difference-maker on that side of the football.