The Dallas Cowboys are officially out of the Bobby Wagner sweepstakes. During the NFL Annual Meetings, Cowboys chief operating officer Stephen Jones revealed that the team is no longer pursuing Wagner in free agency.
“Obviously Dan’s [Quinn] had a history with Bobby and knows him well (so) you look into it,” Jones said during a March 29, 2022 media session, per Fort Worth Star-Telegram’s Clarence Hill. “He’s a great, great football player, Hall of Fame-type player. But as it turned out, it didn’t work out with us.”
The Cowboys had been linked to Wagner just days after the Seahawks released the eight-time Pro Bowl linebacker. Wagner had a connection with Cowboys defensive coordinator Dan Quinn as the two teamed up to be part of Seattle’s Super Bowl run during the 2013 season. ESPN’s Ed Werder reported on March 11 that the Cowboys were in contact with Wagner but clearly these preliminary discussions did not progress very far.
“Source: Cowboys have contacted free-agent linebacker Bobby Wagner and expressed their interest in having him play for DC Dan Quinn, who coached him in Seattle,” Werder tweeted at the time. “Whether the financial components work out is yet to be determined. The two will keep in contact next few days.”
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Wagner Is Seeking an $11 Million Salary: Report
The Rams and Ravens have also been linked to Wagner but so far his asking price appears to be a roadblock to the star defender finding a new team. Wagner was one of several star players linked to the Cowboys this offseason, but the team has typically been bargain shoppers with outside free agents. According to NBC Sports’ Peter King, Wagner is seeking an estimated $11 million salary which has been met with pushback from interested teams.
“Rams have legitimate interest, but not at Wagner’s price—he’s thought to be asking for about $11 million on a one-year deal,” King wrote on March 28. “The 32-year-old linebacker is still playing very well, and he’d be a luxury item for the Super Bowl champs. If he wants to stay in the same division as the team that dropped him, Seattle, Wagner will have to recalibrate his asking price down. He may just find another team—Baltimore? Dallas?—with more money available.”
Wagner is still producing at a high level but his $20.6 million cap hit on the final season of his deal led the Seahawks to release the lone remaining member from the Legion of Boom defense. The defender notched a career-high 170 tackles, five pass deflections, an interception and a forced fumble in 16 appearances for the Seahawks last season. Wagner has had 100 or more tackles in all 10 of his NFL seasons.
Jones on Gregory: ‘He Made Some Difficult Decisions That Were Important to Him’
Another player who will not be wearing a Cowboys uniform next season is Randy Gregory. Jones shot down the notion that Gregory bolted Dallas as a result of the language in the Cowboys’ contract offer.
“I don’t think so at the end,” Jones noted. “I just think from his side he made some difficult decisions that were important to him and his agent. And we had to make some decisions that were important to us. But we weren’t asking him to do anything that we didn’t ask any other player to do. We were willing to work through some things with him, and he just made the decision ultimately with where our offer was versus where Denver was to go with Denver, and we respect that.”