'Blue Bloods' Star Will Estes Digs Into Jamie's Growth Over a Decade (Exclusive)

As Blue Bloods enters its 11th season, fans have come to know the Reagans as well as their own families, watching the characters grow over a decade. Few characters have changed as much as Frank Reagan's youngest son Jamie, played by Will Estes. The character has gone from studying law to choosing to be a beat cop and now has a leadership role as a sergeant. In a recent exclusive interview with PopCulture, Estes looked back on his character's development, suggesting part of the character was an example of "life imitating art."

Estes, 42, noted that Jamie has learned how to be a police officer "right alongside me," adding that after ten years, he finally feels like "I know the ropes." One underrated member of the Blue Bloods family that made that possible was Jim Nuciforo, the show's "incredible" technical advisor. "One of the biggest feathers in my cap is when I know what... the answer is when he asks a question and then he goes, 'Hey, look at you,'" Estes said. "You know, that's that's when I feel like I know I've done my homework and, but there's still so much to know that, that we rely on him for, but yeah I feel like I know a little bit more about what I'm doing."

Jamie also got married recently, after he and Officer Eddie Janko (Vanessa Ray) finally decided to give in to their feelings and tie the knot in Season 9. For longtime viewers, the "will-they, won't-they" part of the relationship went on a little too long. It was not the only thing that went on a little longer than even Estes expected. Estes felt Jamie stayed a uniformed police officer a little longer than expected because the producers still wanted at least one Reagan in a police uniform.

"I felt the same way about Jamie being a cop," Estes said when asked about Jamie and Eddie's relationship developing. "I said you know, 'Is he gonna get promoted at some point?' And because... there's just a natural course, you either try to become a cop or become a detective or... try to run up through the ranks and become a boss. Jamie ends up taking [the latter] route, but that was a long time coming too. They didn't want to have nobody in uniform on Blue Bloods, so I stayed in uniform a little bit longer I think."

When Blue Bloods returns on Friday, Dec. 4, Jamie will begin developing another relationship right out of the gate. He has a storyline with Joe Hill, the previously unknown son of Jamie's deceased older brother Joe Regan. Joe was introduced in the impromptu Season 10 finale "Family Secrets" and was welcomed to the Reagan dinner table. In the Season 11 premiere, Jamie takes on a case with Joe.

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Estes called Joe's introduction an "awesome idea" and suggested that Joe might be more of a brother to Jamie than a nephew. Joe is "obviously his nephew, but I think he sees his brother in him and this family member they didn't know," Estes told PopCulture. "...It's a really powerful experience for Jamie and... it's just been a new cool thing on a show that's run so long to have a new character come in like that. [It] is really a cool bit of oxygen for all of it."