Here are 3 LA Rams options to fill Bobby Wagner's spot

Bobby Wagner
Bobby Wagner / Steph Chambers/GettyImages
1 of 5

The LA Rams have released veteran inside linebacker Bobby Wagner. While that comes as a shock, it does create an opportunity for younger players to step up and claim a larger role in the Rams' defense. While Bobby Wagner remains among the elite inside linebackers in the NFL today, he is about to turn 33 years of age, and the Rams have been willing to part ways with veterans past a certain age. (Andrew Whitworth was the exception).

It was clear that the Rams' defensive strategy frustrated fans. But was it designed that way for a reason? In creating a soft zone appearance, were the Rams counting on pass coverage from their elite inside linebackers that was not always dependable?

To hear some talk, Bobby Wagner was taking the field in a walker and had to be wheeled off in a wheelchair. That was most certainly not the case. We know that the LA Rams needed to save salary cap space, which likely led the team to approach Wagner about reworking his contract to save the team space in 2023. We know that Wagner wants to win one more Super Bowl before he walks away from the game, which more than likely prompted him to say no to dabbling with his contract.

Money or chances of success? Was it the LA Rams or Bobby Wagner? It really doesn't matter right now.

ToMAHto ToMAYto, let's call the whole thing sauce

What does matter is the LA Rams no longer have the guy who suited up for all 17 games, a defender who accounted for 140 tackles (1st on team), who brought down opposing quarterbacks six times (2nd on team) and who picked the quarterback's pocket two times for interceptions (tied for 3rd). He even defensed five passes (tied for 2nd). That is a lot of production to replace.

Must Read. LA Rams: 15 greatest linebackers of All Time. dark

The LA Rams are not going to find that type of production in the 2023 NFL Draft, at least not instantly. Truth be told, the Rams will be hard-pressed to find that level of production in free agency either, and certainly not at an affordable alternative. That means that the Rams will need to find that production internally. So who are the candidates for promotion?