According to multiple reports, 49ers’ star defensive player LB NaVorro Bowman tore his achilles against the Dallas Cowboys in a 24-17 loss.
2:00 minutes left in the third, Bowman is being carted off ?
— Tej Kamaraju (@TejKSports) October 2, 2016
In the 2014 NFC Championship Game, Bowman tore his MCL and ACL in his left knee and was inactive for the entirety of the 2014 NFL season. This achilles injury is a devastating one for the 49ers because Bowman is reliable, a perennial pro-bowler, and it seemed as if he was finally back to his old self.
So what does his injury mean for the Niners moving forward?
Well, for starters, they’ve lost their best defensive player, their team leader, and a fan favorite.
At this point, the 49ers really need some good news. Coming off a bitter loss, in which they held a 14 point lead early on, they really needed a boost before their big game against the Arizona Cardinals on Thursday Night Football (week 5).
Bowman, who was leading the 49ers in tackles (13th in the league) was all over the place. He was a huge presence for the 49ers in the middle of the field. Although their defense has been torched by the Carolina Panthers and the Seattle Seahawks, Bowman somehow served as a lifeline. He was a beacon of hope for the team to rally around.
This young team needed a leader to look towards a bright future and Bowman was that leader. Now, with players who could easily be cut or traded by next season, the young building blocks will need to find a new leader to look towards so that Chip Kelly can find out which players on the team are going to be apart of the future, and which players are just temporary.
The team could go in different directions as a result of Bowman’s injury.
One possible route is that they could win for him and be infused with a whole new offensive and defensive energy. Bowman can still be as inspiring to his teammates from the sidelines as he works hard to make another comeback to football.
Another direction, a less favorable one, is that the 49ers could lose their hope. With their best player sidelined and a 1-3 record where the team showed few glimpses of potential, the 49ers may become dejected, and this could be another lost season for Jed York.