Bowman shakes off injury, leads 49ers' inspired defensive effort
The San Francisco 49ers briefly lost linebacker NaVorro Bowman to a head injury in the second quarter Sunday. For a team allowing more than 35 points per game, the absence of its best defender would have been a crushing blow.
“I was kind of woozy, but I went in and did the concussion protocol,” Bowman said of his exit late in the second quarter against the Chicago Bears. "(I) passed all the tests and was able to return.”
Bowman was back on the field for the second play of the third quarter and registered a game-high 14 tackles as the 49ers limited the Bears to seven second-half points en route to posting their first road win.
“I really see that we can have something special here,” Bowman said. “Maybe it didn’t come as fast as we wanted, but we definitely can see the process and it’s looking good for us.”
Bowman, who missed the entired 2014 season while recovering from a devastating knee injury, had a hand in one of the pivotal plays early in the game. He made the defensive call that led to cornerback Jimmie Ward's pick-six of Bears quarterback Jay Cutler in the first quarter.
“When he made the check in the situation we were in, I knew the screen was coming," Bowman said. "I just had to communicate that to all 11 guys. It was the right call, and Jimmie was able to make the play.”