Eagles 2022 season: Javon Hargrave on list of most important players

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Hargrave on list of most important Eagles following Pro Bowl season originally appeared on NBC Sports Philadelphia

Over the next few weeks leading up to training camp, we’ll be counting down the top 25 most important Eagles for the 2022 season.

25. Quez Watkins
24. Gardner Minshew
23. T.J. Edwards
22. Marcus Epps
21. Landon Dickerson
20. Jake Elliott
19. Brandon Graham
18. Jordan Davis
17. Kyzir White
16. Avonte Maddox 
15. Nakobe Dean
14. Fletcher Cox
13. James Bradberry
12. Miles Sanders
11. Josh Sweat
10. DeVonta Smith
9. Dallas Goedert
8. Javon Hargrave

After a relatively disappointing first season with the Eagles in 2020 because of an early injury, Javon Hargrave got off to an incredible start in 2021. In the first five weeks of the season, Hargrave had 6 sacks, 9 QB hits and 7 tackles for loss.

Even though his pace slowed considerably the rest of the way, he still finished with career highs in sacks (7.5), TFLs (9), QB hits (18) and tackles (63) on the way to his first-career Pro Bowl node.

According to NFL Next Gen stats, Hargrave ranked as the ninth-best disruptor in the NFL last season:

“Hargrave operates on the defensive interior, which means he has to fight through more resistance to reach the quarterback on a per-down basis than an edge rusher. Still, he registered a QB pressure percentage of 15, good for seventh-best in the NFL (min. 200 pass-rush snaps). Those three turnovers caused by pressure stand out in comparison to his counterparts on the interior. Philadelphia will carry high hopes for Hargrave and Cox in 2022, while also welcoming first-round selection Jordan Davis. The rookie could learn a thing or two from the veteran DTs.”

Hargrave, 29, was a disruptive force for the Eagles in 2021 and they’ll need him to repeat that in 2022.

After last season, Hargrave was asked about the next step in his career.

“It’s a lot I can be better at,” Hargrave said. “Some of my hand placement or just even learning more about the game, how I can beat certain blocks or get quicker. Just learning how different people are going to play me so I can mix up some of my stuff to throw them off. I’m gonna just relax for a few months and get back to it.”

While the Eagles drafted Jordan Davis with their first-round pick, Hargrave and Fletcher Cox are still expected to be the starters. But this four-man rotation should really help all members involved. Hargrave can go as hard as he can for a series or a set of plays and then get a breather. And if Hargrave is out there with Davis, perhaps the rookie can deal with some of the double teams Hargrave began to see more frequently as the 2021 season went on. That would be a big help.

With another big season, Hargrave can cash in too. He is entering the third and final season on that three-year, $39 million deal he signed before the 2020 season. If he gets off to a quick start, perhaps the Eagles try to extend him long before Hargrave can become a free agent.

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