The San Francisco 49ers took a huge hit when they lost two of their inside linebackers with the abrupt retirements of ILB Patrick Willis and ILB Chris Borland. A once strength of the team, the 49ers now find themselves thin at the position.
However, the team still has a healthy ILB Michael Wilhoite who filled in admirably last season. And if ILB NaVorro Bowman can return to his 2013 form, the 49ers should be in good shape heading into the season.
49ers head coach Jim Tomsula alluded on Friday that Bowman should be ready to partake in the next minicamp which runs from April 28-30. “When we can get on the field, Bow’s going out on the field,” Tomsula told local media. “He’s moving along great,” Tomsula added.
Last year, we saw a glimpse of Bowman’s rehab as I recorded him sprinting along the sidelines during last year’s practice. (below)
#49ers ILB @navorro_bowman running sprints in practice. Looking strong.
However, how much Bowman will practice remains to be seen as Tomsula said they will ease back the All-Pro. “I haven’t gotten into the specifics on how much, and obviously we’re not going to throw somebody out there and go 100 reps,” Tomsula said.
With the 49ers preparing for the 2015 NFL Draft, it will be interesting to see when they will draft an inside linebacker as that will be a telling sign of how confident they are in Bowman’s return.