As the NFL “legal tampering” period began Monday, one of the questions surrounded the future of defensive tackle Javon Hargrave. The seven-year pro out of South Carolina State is coming off of a career year with the Philadelphia Eagles, and was expected to be a hot commodity when the free agency period kicked off.

We didn't have to wait long to get our answer, because the San Francisco 49ers, the team the Eagles defeated in the NFC Championship Game this past season, are the ones who agreed with Hargrave on a long-term deal. The move by the 49ers is sure to bolster a defensive line that saw inconsistencies with injuries and quarterback pressures.

Of course, when any signing or trade takes place, the thing to do is give the transaction a grade. That's exactly what we're going to do here, breaking down what the signing means for Hargrave, San Francisco and the future. Let's dive in.

Javon Hargrave overview

As mentioned earlier, Javon Hargrave has been in the league for seven seasons, playing the first four with the Pittsburgh Steelers before completing the last three in Philadelphia. Throughout his career, he has been seen as a rotation player, showing signs of being a game-changer, while struggling to find his role in other times.

Last season, that all changed, as he was a huge part of an Eagles defense that lead the NFL in sacks with 70 . Hargrave had 11 of those sacks, with a forced fumble and two fumble recoveries to go along with it. The 11 sacks was a career-high, and the 37 solo tackles he had was also.

With last year being the final of his deal with Philadelphia, there's sure to be a question about this being an anomaly. In other words, is this a season that happened because the player knew there was big money waiting for him if he performed well, or is this setting the stage for what's to come in terms of consistency. Whatever the case is, the 49ers are willing to find out, and the 30-year old tackle has officially cashed in.

Terms of Contract

The 49ers and Hargrave agreed to a four-year, $84 million contract that includes $40 million guaranteed, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter. We know the contract structures are different depending on the league. Yes, money is always the major objective, but in the NFL, it's all about the money that's coming no matter what.

If we look at the annual value of the deal, it would be $21 million per season if it ran its full course. With that said, guaranteed money is the main figure. Therefore, the $40 million coming to Hargrave means it's in essence a two-year deal, with the rest being available through signing bonuses and incentives.

The contract also gives San Francisco room to restructure the deal if it comes to getting under the cap (Hargrave would have to agree to doing this also). It sounds like a win-win for both parties. The 49ers get a defensive tackle that solidifies their line, while Hargrave gets the payday he's been looking for, with the potential to make even more through performance.

Final Grade for Javon Hargrave's 49ers contract

As with any free agency addition, there's always pros and cons that come with it. Therefore, we can only look at the moves on a case-by-case basis, and with San Francisco coming to terms with Hargrave, this looks like something that's more on the pro side than the con.

Before giving a grade to this signing, let's remember contracts aren’t as much about what a player has done in the past as they're about what a team thinks they can do for them in the future. Knowing this, what Hargrave did for the Eagles defensive line was remarkable, considering they had a rotation of defensive linemen coming in-and-out of the lineup.

As good as the defense was in Philly last season (helping the Eagles get to the Super Bowl and almost win it) Hargrave joins a 49ers defense that was first in the league in points allowed per game. San Francisco's defense features the reigning Defensive Player of the Year in Nick Bosa, along with All-Pros in linebacker Fred Warner and safety Talanoa Hufanga.

Even with a defense as strong as one the 49ers have, there are still ways for them to get better (which is scary). Hargrave is someone who adds to a pass rush that struggled to generate pressure with the exception of Bosa, who led the league with 18.5 sacks in the regular season. No one else on the team had more that five.

If Hargrave is anything like the player he was with the Eagles, opposing offensive lines will have nightmares leading up to a battle with the San Francisco. For now, we can only project, and on paper, this move is a awesome pickup.

Grade: A