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San Francisco 49ers make splash, sign one of the top NFL free agents

The San Francisco 49ers were not expected to be players when it comes to some of the biggest NFL free agents on the market.

A little over an hour after the NFL free agent tampering period opened, that changed big time. According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, San Francisco has signed Philadelphia Eagles Pro Bowl defensive tackle Javon Hargrave.

Schefter reports that the deal is for $84 million over four seasons with $40 million guaranteed at signing. This makes Hargrave the fourth-highest paid defensive tackle in the league, surpassing reigning NFL Defensive Player of the Year finalist Chris Jones of the Kansas City Chiefs.

For the San Francisco 49ers, this is an absolutely huge deal. Hargrave will team up with Arik Armstead and Nick Bosa to form one of the best defensive fronts in the game. The former Pittsburgh Steelers third-round pick was absolutely electric for the defending NFC champion Eagles last season.

Related: Grading NFL free agent signings, including Javon Hargrave to the San Francisco 49ers

  • Javon Hargrave stats (2022): 60 tackles, 17 QB hits, 10 tackles for loss, 11 sacks, 1 forced fumble

San Francisco sought to add another dynamic pass rusher to go with a player in Bosa who earned DPOY in 2022 with a whopping 18.5 sacks. It has done just that in what has to be considered the most surprising move of the young NFL free agency period.

It’s also interesting in that Hargrave’s former Eagles team destroyed an injury-plagued San Francisco 49ers squad in the NFC Championship Game this past January. The 30-year-old defensive tackle recorded a sack in the 31-7 San Francisco loss.

From a team-building philosophy, this move comes immediately ahead of San Francisco likely locking up the aforementioned Bosa on what would be a record-breaking contract. He’s expected to become the highest-paid defensive player in NFL history later this offseason.

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