Several teams went after Javon Hargrave during free agency, but the 49ers made the defensive tackle decision easy.
“When I got this call from the 49ers and heard them talk about how much they wanted me, it was really a quick decision,” Hargraves told local Bay Area media Thursday.
“When you have a great team that wants you, I don’t think it’s really a hard decision. That’s all you like in football – win and get paid.”
Hargrave has been part of two successful franchises, spending his first four NFL seasons with the Pittsburgh Steelers and his last three with the Philadelphia Eagles. The Pro Bowl lineman has played in eight playoff games, four with each of his previous teams.
The 30-year-old believes the trend will now continue with the 49ers.
The San Francisco pursuit, however, came as a surprise to Hargrave, who did not have the greatest confidence in his ability to go free.
“I couldn’t believe it myself,” Hargrave said. “I really couldn’t. Sometimes when you are trying to get the money you have to go to a team that is in a rebuild mode. If you have the chance to switch to a team that was just in the NFC Championship, it’s an easy decision for me.
“It made me really happy because I was very nervous about having a free hand on where I had to go, but I think this is the perfect situation for me.”
Hargrave is enjoying a career-best season in which he recorded 11 sacks and 60 tackles — 37 solo and 10 for losses. The defensive tackle also regularly got hold of opposing quarterbacks and recorded 16 hits in the process.
Hargrave, known for his ability to bull offensive lineman, is excited to support Defensive Player of the Year Arik Armstead and Nick Bosa in the trenches. The 6-foot-2, 305-pound defender knows Bosa’s presence alone opens up opportunities to get close to the passer.
“It was really shocking to me that they called me and asked me to come over here,” Hargrave said. “Because a team like that doesn’t pay someone like me to come over. I was just happy to be a part of all these dogs here. You have a lot of talent.”
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Hargrave has kept an eye on the 49ers’ defensive line and finds their aggressive, unrelenting tendencies very attractive. The South Carolina state product believes this will be a key element in getting back to the “big dance” – something he certainly hopes will help his new team achieve.
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