The same day the Seahawks begin a new era, they write a beautiful end to the previous one by sign linebacker KJ Wright to a one-day deal before the start of training camp on Wednesday in order for him to retire as a member of the team.

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Wright was a key player for the Seahawks during the most successful period in team history. Joining the team as a fourth-round pick in the 2011 NFL Draft, Wright formed a formidable and stable duo at linebacker with perennial All-Pro Bobby Wagner, who joined the team as a as a second-round selection the following year. They played side by side for nine of Wright’s 11 pro seasons, and all told, Wright played 10 years with Seattle.

A Pro Bowler in 2016, Wright helped the Seahawks win the Super Bowl at the end of the 2014 season, reach the title game again a year later and have nine straight winning seasons from 2012 to 2020.

He spent last season with the Las Vegas Raiders, his only campaign with a team other than Seattle. Wright’s departure to free agency was in some ways a signal that a changing of the guard was coming to Seattle, with Wagner and quarterback Russell Wilson leaving town after last season due to a release and trade. , respectively.

Wright, who turned 33 last week, joined The Mike Salk Show on Seattle Sports in June and discussed his future. He seemed prepared for the possibility of a retreat.

“I’m going to keep training and stay ready for a phone call. And if a phone call doesn’t come when I want the phone call to come, then I’ll be fine,” he told Mike Salk.

He also stated in the interview that he was interested in returning to the Seahawks franchise in a different role once his playing days are over.

“I want to be in construction. I want to help,” he said. “I want to help rebuild the team where I know it could be. Whether it’s on the front office side, whether it’s on the consulting side, on the coaching side, I would love to be in that building to help this team to once again become a Super Bowl championship caliber team.

The signing of Wright’s one-day contract appears to have been an emotional moment for himself, head coach Pete Carroll and general manager John Schneider, as evidenced by photos taken Wednesday by Seahawks photographer Rod Mar.

Not only has Wright always been a solid contributor in his time with the Seahawks, but he has seemed to improve with age. His best seasons were arguably his last two with Seattle, making 132 tackles and three interceptions – two career highs – in 2019, then following that up with 86 tackles, a pick and two sacks in 2020. He was also a remarkably consistent presence on the team, playing all 16 regular season games six times with Seattle, and 15 games in two others. He also played in all 17 games last year with the Raiders.

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