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The 2022 NFL offseason has been a rather staggering display of the league’s haves and have nots, as a few teams have been loading up on talent — headlined by the arms race in the AFC West — creating what feels like as sizable a gap as we’ve seen in recent years between the contender class and the rest in the NFL.
In the NFC, very few teams have made a significant leap forward this offseason, and that has left the door open for the Los Angeles Rams to try and run it back after winning this February’s Super Bowl. After extending Matthew Stafford’s contract and bringing in Allen Robinson to play opposite Cooper Kupp, L.A. shifted its attention to the defensive side of the ball to shore up its lone area of potential weakness, the linebacking corps.
On Thursday, word broke from Adam Schefter and Richard Sherman that former Seahawks star linebacker Bobby Wagner was staying in the NFC West and signing a 5-year, $50 million deal with the Rams (with incentives that can take it to $65 million).
Former Seahawks’ Pro-Bowl linebacker Bobby Wagner is signing a five-year, $50 million deal worth up to $65 million with the Los Angeles Rams, per league sources. Wagner is staying in the NFC West.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 31, 2022
— Richard Sherman (@RSherman_25) March 31, 2022
As Sherman notes, Wagner passed on the chance to join the Ravens in order to stay on the West coast, and will join a loaded defense that lost Von Miller to Buffalo, but, provided Aaron Donald returns, figures to be a dominant group once again. The NFC West still features two other contenders in the Niners and Cardinals, but the Rams are once again putting together a team that appears to have the balance and talent level to compete for a championship and figure to be the favorites not only for the division but for the conference crown.