Bowman was revealed at No. 37 on the list voted on by his NFL peers. Last year, Bowman ranked at No. 85.
“I like Bowman from San Francisco,” Philadelphia Eagles inside linebacker DeMeco Ryans said. “He’s physical at the point of attack. He takes on linemen, sheds the blocker and does a good job of forcing fumbles. He’s a tackling machine.”
According to the count of 49ers coaches, Bowman has registered 356 tackles over the past two seasons. Bowman also earned first-team All-Pro selections in those years.
“He’s extremely fast, runs sideline to sideline and covers the ball as well as any linebacker in the game right now,” retired center Jeff Saturday said. “You can’t get him off the field. No matter what offensive formation you give them, he’s going to be on the field.”
Bowman’s one of the most valuable members of San Francisco’s defensive lineup. As a three-down linebacker, Bowman is able to make plays against the run and the pass.
Furthermore, his biggest moment of 2012 came in the form of a pass breakup.
With the Atlanta Falcons looking for a go-ahead score in the NFC title game, the 49ers strongside inside linebacker broke up Matt Ryan’s fourth-down pass to Roddy White with 1:19 left in the game.
“He’s going up against a receiver and they would look at it on their side of the ball as a mismatch, you may not think he was in the advantage in that situation, but I guarantee you he did,” 49ers wide receiver
Clutch pass breakups, bruising tackles in between the hashmarks and the ability to chase down ball carriers sideline-to-sideline – all have earned Bowman quite the reputation in his three seasons in the NFL.
“He’s a real linebacker,” Ryans said. “I think Bowman’s one of the top linebackers in this league.”