Welcome to the fifth edition of “Who to Rep,” our ongoing series in which we recommend a player to rep for the upcoming week. Our selection process is rigorously unscientific, but we hope you like it anyway.
The Seahawks spoiled us for choice this week, with a thunderous second half beatdown of Indianapolis. Honorable mentions go to Week 1 Who to Rep pick Earl Thomas, out of nowhere scoring threat J.D. McKissic, and finally-finding-his-sea(hawk)legs Jimmy Graham. Russell Wilson also looked a few years younger in the second half, but two interceptions and a safety keep him out the running this week.
Instead, our Who to Rep pick is linebacker Bobby Wagner. Anytime a defensive player registers a touchdown, they’re having a good week, but Wagner did a lot more than just run a fumble home. He pressured Colts QB Jacoby Brissett on four out five pass rushing snaps, and recorded four solo tackles (six total), half a sack, and three QB hits. Whether targeting the QB or defending against the pass or the run, Wagner seemed to be everywhere, putting plenty of pressure on a Colts offense that managed only a field goal in the second half.
Let’s not undercut that fumble return, though. In addition to putting points on the board for Seattle and putting an increasingly gassed Colts defense back on the field, it also felt like the biggest momentum shift of the game, with Seattle having just scored on the other side of the ball, and leading by less than a touchdown. B Wags has always had a knack for the moment, and Sunday night was no different. Once he made his move, it was all Seahawks the rest of the way.
Next week will be a tougher challenge, as Seattle heads to Los Angeles to take on the division-leading Rams and their revamped—and seemingly unstoppable—new offense. It’ll be largely on Wagner to contain not-quite-literally-but-pretty-much-literally-on-fire running back Todd Gurley, and to help keep pressure on QB Jared Goff. That’s a much taller order than it was last year, as Goff’s transformed from a borderline bust into one of the deadliest passers in the league first four weeks of the season.
With the Cardinals and the 49ers not presently looking like true contenders, it’s going to come down to the Rams and the Seahawks in the NFC West. Rep Bobby Wagner this week to show the Angelinos in your life exactly how that little story is going to play out.