Commanders Sign All-Pro Linebacker Bobby Wagner: Report

Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images Bobby Wagner.

The Washington Commanders are signing All-Pro linebacker Bobby Wagner, according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, who said it’s one-year deal with a maximum value of $8.5 million and $6 million guaranteed.

The future Hall of Famer reunites with new Commanders coach Dan Quinn. The two were together in Seattle and were part of the Seahawks legendary defense dubbed “The Legion of Boom.”

The 11-year veteran and six-time All-Pro recorded 130 tackles and had 4 sacks for Seattle en route to his ninth Pro Bro selection in 2023. He was mentioned as a possible target for Washington and the Quinn connections continue to be made. Quinn has now brought in five free agents whom he has worked with in the past.

He joins 2021 first-round pick Jamin Davis and the recently acquired Frankie Luvu in a linebacker room that now has youth and experience. The Commanders seem intent on upgrading the worst statistical defense in the NFL.

Get to Know Commanders Linebacker Bobby Wagner

Seattle drafted Wagner in the second round of the 2012 NFL draft. He finished his rookie season with 140 tackles, 3 interceptions and 2 sacks. He was runner-up for AP Defensive Rookie of the Year. 

Wagner’s team won the 2014 Super Bowl, where his defense stifled a Broncos offense led by quarterback Peyton Manning.

By his third season, Wagner collected his third straight 100+ tackle season and was named to his first All-Pro team. His first Pro Bowl selection streak continued for the next seven seasons.

After 10 seasons in Seattle, Wagner signed with the Los Angeles Rams. After a season away, he returned to Seattle in 2023 before making his way to the other coast.

Wagner has avoided the injury bug for the majority of his playing career. He has never played fewer than 11 games in a season. Since 2015, he has played in at least 15 games each season. Wagner has also never recorded less than 100 tackles in a season.

The 183 tackles he made last season at the age of 33 were the most of his illustrious career.

Commanders Spending in Free Agency

At the moment, Washington has brought in 13 new players making up 24% of the roster. The nine selections they own in the 2024 NFL draft push the possible new additions up to 22 new players or 41% of the 53-man roster.

The new league year officially began March 13 at 4 p.m. Eastern time.

If you think the Commanders spent all their cash in the first store they entered, think again. Before the Wagner deal, Washington was still sitting on a large pile of cash. If a player they believe could help this team becomes available, they certainly have enough funds to get a deal worked out.

With so many high draft selections, Washington does have to set aside an estimated $16.3 million to sign their draft class. It certainly doesn’t preclude them from any moves as they still have over $40 million in space including the rookie tab.

The Commanders have 58 players under contract and teams cannot exceed the 90-man limit. The spending will likely continue as the first wave of free agency dies down; the second wave could see Washington add even more players to their new team.