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Ex-Eagles star Javon Hargrave: It was ‘shocking’ that 49ers wanted me 3/17/2023 Kevin Manahan,

Javon Hargrave knew he was one of the top-rated free agents. He read the lists compiled by analysts and talked to his agent about what the market might deliver.

So, when a team lured the defensive tackle away from the Philadelphia Eagles with a four-year, $80 million deal, Hargrave wasn’t surprised. That’s the going price for a dominant pass rusher who had 11 sacks, 60 tackles, 10 tackles for loss, and two fumble recoveries last season — while combining with Haason Reddick (16 sacks), Brandon Graham (11) and Josh Sweat (11) to make the Eagles the only team since 1982 to have four players with double-digit sacks in a season.

What was shocking? That the money came from a Super Bowl contender and not a rebuilding franchise.

“... Leaving Philly, I was fortunate enough to play with a bunch of dogs. And just seeing the 49ers last year when we played them in a championship game, we saw how many dogs they had over there,” Hargrave said.

“So it really was shocking to me that they called me and asked me to come over here because a team like that doesn’t really pay somebody like me to come over here. So I was just happy to be a part of all these dogs over here. They got a lot of talent, too, and it’s just an easier transition.”

The Eagles spanked the 49ers in the NFC Championship Game — knocking a pair of quarterbacks out of the contest — but Hargrave believes the Niners have the talent to return to the postseason next season. So, for him, it’s a win-win: a big pay check and the expectation of a lot of wins.

“They’ve been in a lot of big games,” Hargrave said. “For me, I just love playing in primetime games or big games. It’s just a great feeling when being in the NFL to be able to play in some of them big moments. When going into free agency, and you’ve got a great team that wants you, I feel like it’s not really a hard decision to make because that’s all you like in football, is winning and getting paid.”


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