Ex-Seahawks LB Bobby Wagner nearly leads Rams to victory

Playing his former team for the first time, Bobby Wagner had one of the best games of his NFL career.

INGLEWOOD, Calif. (AP) — Bobby Wagner had one of the best games of his NFL career for the first time against his former team.

The only thing he couldn’t do was give the Los Angeles Rams a win.

The Seahawks rebounded late in the fourth quarter to a 27-23 win in a game in which Wagner had two sacks, an interception and seven tackles against Seattle on Sunday. The six-time All-Pro selection spent 10 years with the Seahawks, including their 2013 championship season, before being released in the offseason. He wasn’t a free agent for long and signed with his hometown team.

Wagner said all week before the game that he was keeping his emotions in check. There was no time to reflect on the Rams’ shorthandedness, including Aaron Donald, who missed his first game through injury.

“I’m a master at controlling my emotions and I manage them very well throughout the week and the game,” Wagner said. “Honestly, I felt like we had a lot of people outside. I wanted to try to give the team a spark and help us find a win.”

It’s the third time in his career that Wagner has had multiple sacks in a game. He has five this season, which is a career high. He also had three tackles for loss and two quarterback hits.

Wagner’s biggest impact came in back-to-back games in the third quarter. On the first and ten from LA’s 36-yard line, Tony Jones Jr. stopped for a 2-yard loss. On the next play, Wagner snatched the football away from Jones on an interception screen pass.

Seattle coach Pete Carroll thought Jones was down, but the replay confirmed the call. NFL senior vice president of officiating Walt Anderson said in a pool report that Jones had no possession when he went down – and Wagner made a clean streak.

“He gets a pick for a play that we’re still arguing about,” Carroll said. “I can’t wait to see him so I can argue with him too because I’ll tell him he didn’t catch it and he’ll tell me he did.

“Getting up like this today and playing like this, he will remember that. So what else will he do? Of course he will do something like that, so hats off to him.”

Wagner and his teammates failed to stop the Seahawks late in the fourth quarter when Geno Smith found DK Metcalf for the go-ahead touchdown with 36 seconds remaining. It’s a sixth straight loss for the defending Super Bowl champion and guarantees a 9-3 loss for Sean McVay’s first losing season in six years.

“I’m a winner and I want to win, and that’s why it didn’t happen, so it’s never really a good thing,” Wagner said. “This is a game you should have won and you allowed a good team to make plays and they did.”

Wagner met with former teammates on the field before and after the game. Metcalf said it was fun facing the Rams because he knew Wagner was lined up on the other side.

“He’s a damn good linebacker, a damn good competitor and just awesome to fight against,” Metcalf said. “He has all my respect for this game, but after this game I have a lot more respect for him.”

McVay said the coaching staff and teammates knew how important this game was for Wagner. He also said he appreciates what Wagner was able to accomplish on and off the field amid a disappointing season.

“He’s as consistent and consistent as any player I’ve ever been with,” said McVay. “I learn from him and am grateful for the example he sets.”

https://www.king5.com/article/sports/nfl/seahawks/ex-seahawks-lb-bobby-wagner-nearly-leads-rams-to-victory/281-9f75f438-f0b6-440b-b541-86351ddbc26e Ex-Seahawks LB Bobby Wagner nearly leads Rams to victory

Emma Bowman

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