Bowman not expected back until mid-season after suffering torn ACL.
San Francisco 49ers linebacker NaVorro Bowman has insisted that he is targeting the Defensive Player of the Year award when he returns to the field.
The 25-year-old suffered a torn ACL during the NFC Championship Game against the Seattle Seahawks earlier this year, and he isn’t expected back until mid-season which was the projection offered by coach John Harbaugh back in February.
However, with reports that he is ahead of his initial recovery schedule, Bowman is already setting his sights on both individual and collective accolades for when he returns to action.
“I’m going to come back and (win the award),” Bowman said, as reported by ESPN.
“I thought I should have won it last year, but last year is gone. But it has put some more fire in my body.”
While the award eventually went to Carolina Panthers linebacker Luke Kuechly, Bowman was gracious in defeat particularly considering the impressive nature of his 2013 season and that he didn’t receive any votes in the AP process for the award.
Bowman suffered the knee injury on a signature play as he stripped the ball and had possession of it while tearing his ACL, and he admits now that he knew he had suffered the injury but was intent on just holding onto the ball.
It remains to be seen if he continues to stay ahead of schedule with his off-season work and the 49ers will undoubtedly monitor him closely as he will be an integral piece of their roster moving forward as they look to bounce back from the loss to Seattle and get back to the Super Bowl.