According to a report, the San Francisco 49ers’ worst fears have been realized—All-Pro linebacker NaVorro Bowman sustained both a torn ACL and MCL when his left leg was twisted awkwardly beneath Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Jermaine Kearse in the fourth quarter of Sunday’s NFC Championship in Seattle.
Pro Football Talk reported Monday that, according to a league source, both ligaments were torn but there was no dislocation of the knee. Bowman will have surgery to repair the ACL once the MCL is given some time to heal.
That would be the same recovery approach taken with New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski when he tore both ligaments earlier this season. Gronkowski’s ACL surgery took place a little more than a month after the initial injury.
As far as a timeline goes, Bowman would appear to be at risk of missing all or at least some of training camp.
Bowman has been named All-Pro for each of the last three seasons. He had a career high five sacks in 2013 while recording two interceptions, one that he returned for his first career touchdown, nine passes defended, six forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries and 180 tackles. According to pro-football-reference.com, Bowman tied with Carolina Panthers linebacker Luke Kuechly for fourth in the NFL in approximate value, one notch behind Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning and guard Louis Vasquez and San Francisco’s not-so-favorite player, Seattle cornerback Richard Sherman.