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Bobby Wagner contract asking price reportedly pushing Los Angeles Rams away

Matt Johnson

The Los Angeles Rams know free-agent linebacker Bobby Wagner could be the missing piece that makes one of the best NFL defenses in 2022 even better. Unfortunately, money could be standing in the way of a perfect pairing.

Wagner, released by the Seattle Seahawks on March 8, is drawing plenty of attention on the open market from Super Bowl contenders. He met with the Rams this past week and later visited the Baltimore Ravens.

A six-time member of the first-team All-Pro roster, the former 47th overall pick is a coveted target around the league. At least for the Rams, though, Wagner’s contract wishes exceed what they believe he’ll bring to a team.

According to NBC Sports’ Peter King, Wagner is seeking a one-year contract worth about $11 million. It’s a salary that the Rams reportedly aren’t comfortable with, despite their strong interest in the star linebacker.

It’s not entirely about available cap room. According to OvertheCap.com, Los Angeles is $8.8 million under the 2022 salary cap. It could make additional room through contract extensions with Aaron Donald and Cooper Kupp, but no deal is imminent with either star.

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If the Rams aren’t willing to sign Wagner to an $11 million contract, there is still a possibility he finds another team willing to approach that mark.

Wagner remains one of the best players in the NFL at his position and he brings leadership to a locker room. It likely won’t be long before the eight-time Pro Bowl selection with 68 tackles for loss and 60 pass deflections in his career, finds a new home.