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49ers fear ACL and MCL damage for Bowman


After Sunday night’s loss to the Seahawks, 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh said that the preliminary assessment of linebacker NaVorro Bowman’s knee injury revealed a suspected ACL injury.

Per a league source, the team fears both an ACL and MCL injury.  An MRI, which has not yet been conducted, will reveal the full extent of the damage.

While mild to moderate MCL injuries can heal without surgery, an MCL injury could delay Bowman’s timetable for surgery, if the decision is made to allow the MCL to heal before repairing a possible torn ACL.  Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski waited one month and one day to have ACL surgery because of an MCL injury that needed to heal.

With Bowman’s injury happening on January 19, time will be of the essence as the 49ers prepare for the 2014 season.

Bowman’s leg was trapped under Seahawks receiver Jermaine Kearse near the San Francisco goal line.  Kearse fumbled, Bowman recovered — and Bowman held the ball until the hit the ground even after the injury occurred.  A bad call by the officials and the inability by rule to review the play gave the ball back to Seattle, who emerged with it from the ensuing scrum.

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73 Responses to “49ers fear ACL and MCL damage for Bowman”
  1. metalman5150 says: Jan 20, 2014 12:23 PM

    Shame on the NFL.

  2. bigshirk says: Jan 20, 2014 12:23 PM

    Such a brutal injury. knee was completely twisted.

  3. thehatefulnerd says: Jan 20, 2014 12:24 PM

    It’s one thing to sacrifice your body like that.

    What makes it so horrific is the officials took the ball away from him.

  4. that's the best linebacker i've seen since Joe Montana says: Jan 20, 2014 12:26 PM

    True warrior and I hope the best for his recovery.

    Certain Seahawk fans should be ashamed for throwing trash at the player as he was carted off. Blackeye to the organization.

  5. rubenxx7 says: Jan 20, 2014 12:26 PM

    Talk about insult to injury. Thats too bad he was best player on the field for sf.

  6. damnskins703 says: Jan 20, 2014 12:28 PM

    Wow just gets worse for the Niners and their fans. Niners not only lost the game, fight, war, but also the best LB in the league who will never be the same and they lost their best offensive line men.

  7. beardinals says: Jan 20, 2014 12:28 PM

    Thanks for replaying that about a hundred times, Fox! Just the image I want burned into my brain for the next week. Ugh!

  8. singhgill says: Jan 20, 2014 12:28 PM

    I’m a Seahawk fan wishing Bowman a speedy recovery. Felt terrible watching that. Praying you come back better than ever. 49ers linebackers respect others and deserve all the respect. Best in the league.

  9. irootforthecardinals says: Jan 20, 2014 12:29 PM

    The NFC West has the best crop of linebackers. I don’t like bowman, but I hope he recovers.

  10. abqhawk says: Jan 20, 2014 12:29 PM

    Seahawk’s fan here.

    Best of luck Bowman, hope you mend well and are back for next season.

    And to those who threw food and trash at you, let me apologize. That was classless but we both have some classless fans in our bases.

  11. kolbydoerge says: Jan 20, 2014 12:29 PM

    SO OUCH 49ers!

    AS the NFC’s best team I am done with talking. We walked it.

    BUT There are a few guys out there you cannot root against. Bowman Willis are those on that team, feel sorry you guys you have a terrible coach to follow going forward. Good luck in rehab..get your self healthy.

  12. legionofboom88 says: Jan 20, 2014 12:29 PM

    Kaep is a choke artist. Why would you EVER throw at Sherman with the game on the line when you have an arm like KAEP’S?!

    How stupid.

    Jim cries about officiating… right on que.

  13. ravens4fr says: Jan 20, 2014 12:29 PM

    Bowman is a ‘beast’….that dude is one tough SOB!

  14. skippynj says: Jan 20, 2014 12:30 PM

    Jim Harbaugh wants an explanation.

  15. arwiv says: Jan 20, 2014 12:30 PM

    Doesn’t look like he will be ready for the start of the season. That’s a huge hit for them if that’s the case, being that 2014 is probably the last year you’ll have this same basic niners team.

  16. theysone says: Jan 20, 2014 12:30 PM

    You forgot to mention the completely classless 12th man booing and throwing food and garbage at Bowman as he was carted off the field. Absolutely disgusting.

    Wishing Bowman a speedy recovery.

  17. fin72 says: Jan 20, 2014 12:30 PM

    You knew after watching that injury that the ACL was only going to be the beginning.

  18. thereisfootballwestofjersey says: Jan 20, 2014 12:33 PM

    This injury hurts bad in more ways than one. Bowman is so fast, I fear this will take a step or two off his natural closing speed.

    I’d also like to point out Russell Wilson is ALL CLASS. He kneeled next to and comforted Bowman when it mattered most. That’s the ultimate sign of respect.

  19. bert1913 says: Jan 20, 2014 12:33 PM

    As a huge seahawks fan I have nothing but respect for your linebacking crew. Not only are they great players, but they are great people too. I hope that bowman makes a speedy recovery.

    The seahawks need to find those fans that threw stuff at bowman and ban them for life. That was really embarrassing not only to the seahawks, but to the whole city of Seattle.

  20. cornerstone2001 says: Jan 20, 2014 12:34 PM

    Seattle classless organization, players and fans.

    Bowman is the best..

  21. mx1dave says: Jan 20, 2014 12:34 PM

    sorry that he got hurt. he is one of the best. i love hearing all you forty whiners today. the forty whiners are starting to remind me of the bills.

  22. @Cereal_22 says: Jan 20, 2014 12:36 PM

    Just brutal, good luck Navarro ! WE ARE !

  23. hazelmn says: Jan 20, 2014 12:36 PM

    Poetic justice would be Bowman returning a pick for 6 to knock the Hawks out of the playoffs next year, in front of Seattle fans. In this scenario, the 49ers would win 14-10, with their other TD coming from Crabtree outjumping Sherman in the end zone.

    And I am not even an NFC West fan…. but this is one great rivalry.

    Pulling for Bowman to make a full recovery.

  24. yooperman says: Jan 20, 2014 12:36 PM

    That was hard to watch. I mean both the ugly injury and also the ugly call.

  25. usdcoyotesfan says: Jan 20, 2014 12:37 PM

    Packers fan here. Props to him for holding on to the ball. That no-fumble call was highway robbery.

  26. sportsnut101 says: Jan 20, 2014 12:40 PM

    Nfl should donate 1 million for a fine on themselves for this dumb rule

    It wasn’t even close he clearly took the ball away The ref should be fined.
    Its one thing if it’s in reg season game n miss it.
    This was in biggest moment Good thing it didn’t cost them the game

  27. footballcrazyguy says: Jan 20, 2014 12:42 PM

    A great linebacker who could star on any team. Hope he recovers completely. I am a Hawks fan but the idiots who threw things at him as he was being carted off are an embarrassment to all of us. Our team is good and some of them (come on down, Richard Sherman) say things I wish they would not say but for fans to act like jackasses doesn’t reflect well on Seattle at all. Show some character. Disgraceful.

  28. bigbaldpapahawk says: Jan 20, 2014 12:42 PM

    Speedy recovery to you buddy. You played a good game.

  29. bassplucker says: Jan 20, 2014 12:44 PM

    The Niners terrific rookie safety Eric Reid has to feel just terrible . He’s the guy who actually drove Kearse into Bowman’s leg.

    I’m afraid LB may be moving way up the Niners draft list once those test results come back.

  30. usdcoyotesfan says: Jan 20, 2014 12:45 PM

    Pretty hard to feel sorry for Bowman, considering everyone was laughing their @$$es off when Aaron Rodgers went down.

  31. kanemoney says: Jan 20, 2014 12:45 PM

    I can’t believe how many times they showed that replay on Fox. Our watching party was howling the entire time. I have never seen a knee do that. Hope he recovers quickly. OUCH.

  32. monkeyhateclean says: Jan 20, 2014 12:45 PM

    Congrats, Philly. The next time the topic of “Which NFL city has the worst fans?” comes up, snowballs thrown at Santa will pale compared to food and garbage thrown at a broken player.

    Seattle fans, you earned it.

  33. pw1265 says: Jan 20, 2014 12:46 PM

    stop the damn whinning, the whinners lost!!! face facts!!!
    had capnuts been able to throw a better football they many have won……….


  34. opneon says: Jan 20, 2014 12:47 PM

    I guess Crabtree should have pushed off of Sherman and then called for a defensive foul – like he did when he pushed the Raven last year.

    At least that way you and your coach could cry about it for a year and have an excuse for losing.


  35. jagsfan1 says: Jan 20, 2014 12:51 PM

    NB – Take the ENTIRE season off next year to heal and rebuild COMPLETELY – and come back in 2015.

    These super quick “superhuman” comebacks do not allow enough time for healing and rebuilding strength…and only set you up for either more injuries, subpar play, or both.

    Take your time to heal and don’t let the team push you back too early.

  36. pedskittle says: Jan 20, 2014 12:54 PM

    As a Hawks fan, want to wish Bowman all the best. He is a stud. Hawks have very good ‘backers, but Bowman is the one guy I find myself frequently thinking, ‘Man, if we had HIM on our team.’
    The fumble call of course was atrocious. When the Hawks fumbled on the next play, even as a Hawks fan and an agnostic, I said to my wife, “That’s divine justice.”
    What a great football game. I hope Navorro has a full and speedy recovery so we can keep battling with him in the years to come.

  37. nflr92 says: Jan 20, 2014 12:54 PM

    One of these days, these officiating mistakes are going to cost a team a game! We need the regular officials back now!!

    It’s understandable that neither the wing official, the umpire nor the back judge saw the play on the ball clearly since it was a play near the goal line so why would anyone with a clear view of the action be looking there at that point? Not.

  38. fasteddy85 says: Jan 20, 2014 12:54 PM

    What made the play so terrible was, even before they started showing the replays of the actual injury, players from BOTH teams were getting out of the scrum and were frantically waving to the sidelines for help. The second that happened, you knew it was bad. And then, of course, Fox replayed it for what seemed like an eternity. My heart goes out to Bowman. Also, shame on the NFL for not allowing that play to be reviewed. Does anybody even know what can or can’t be reviewed??

  39. jburk003 says: Jan 20, 2014 12:55 PM

    Everyone is trying to talk about “the reason” the 49ers lost the game yesterday.

    The officials were absolute horrible in the second half towards the 49ers.
    Very one sided. All the calls against the 49ers were questionable. While only obvious calls went against Seattle.

    Still, the 49ers cost themselves the game.
    It wasn’t Kaepernicks interceptions that lost the game. It wasn’t the non-call on the punt.

    As a 49er fan, there are two plays that will haunt me about this loss.

    1- being close to the 50 with 3rd and 1 and Kaepernick takes the 5 yard delay of game and 9ers don’t convert.

    2- why didn’t harbaugh call a timeout before that last play??? 22 yard line with 40 seconds left….

    Officials were evidently bad. Still though, as a 49er fan I must say that we dropped opportunities to win that game

  40. realfootballfan says: Jan 20, 2014 12:55 PM

    It’s a shame because he was the best player in the playoffs on either side of the ball this year, period. I hope this injury won’t change his level of play when he gets back. He’s taken his game to another level.

  41. radrntn says: Jan 20, 2014 12:56 PM

    I feel bad for bowman, and the niners team. I hope he can come back stronger than ever.As far as their pompous arrogant placed me on a pedestal better than thou fans,they can go buy some kleenex and quit their whining already. Goes for their coach as well……always execuses…now blame it on the refs…welcome to the “reality” of each and every raider game.

  42. pboy415 says: Jan 20, 2014 12:56 PM

    legionofboom88 says:
    Jan 20, 2014 12:29 PM
    Kaep is a choke artist. Why would you EVER throw at Sherman with the game on the line when you have an arm like KAEP’S?!

    How stupid.

    Jim cries about officiating… right on que.
    You’re a lil off topic buddy.. You guys won… Now u stop whining

  43. dedicatedhawkfan says: Jan 20, 2014 12:59 PM

    Let’s not forget that the VERY next play resulted in better field position for the 49ers. I agree bad call but had they called it correctly, whiners would have taken over on the 1 yard line. The next play was 4th down and a Lynch fumble with the ball bouncing in whiners’ favor. So whine all you want (and ya’ll want an awful lot) but that bad call had no impact on the game.

  44. kenstabler says: Jan 20, 2014 1:06 PM

    That one was hard to watch, but I remember a game between the then L.A. Raiders and S.F. 49ers in 1994 when running back Napoleon McCallum’s leg did a 360 and looked like it might tear off, that was the worst I have ever seen to this day. I don’t think I could watch that one again.

    McCallum never played again, bowman is looking probably 2015 for full recovery. Best wishes NaVorro.

  45. janvanflac says: Jan 20, 2014 1:12 PM

    Hoping it’s not worse than ligament damage (i.e no nerve or bone damage as well). Bowman is a great player. He should definitely take all the time he needs even if it means spending half of next season on PUP/IR. No need to rush it.

  46. guachosporlife says: Jan 20, 2014 1:13 PM

    The injury was like Joe Theismanns injury, hard to watch.

  47. billytodd2013blbaad says: Jan 20, 2014 1:18 PM

    The NFL really needs to review their replay policy as that was a mugging as for Bowman, great player and I hope he has a speedy recovery and no I’m not a niner or hawks fan just a fan of excellent players and Bowman is one of if not the best LB in the game today.

  48. coolherc says: Jan 20, 2014 1:21 PM

    Sucks for Bowman. Guy’s a true warrior. Gonna take the better part of a year for him to get back.

    That said, guess we won’t be hearing from 49’ers fans for quite some time saying “who’s got it better than us”. The answer to that was pretty obvious throughout the course of the season given that they were in 2nd place dating all the way back to week 2 in Sept.

  49. osiris33 says: Jan 20, 2014 1:31 PM

    A) The call didn’t cost the 49ers at all. The Seahawks did not score on the drive so quit whining about it.

    B) The play happened so fast it was almost impossible to tell where the ball was in real time. You can’t tell from the full speed play that Bowman has the ball. I’m not surprised the refs missed it.

    C) There is no proof whatsoever that fans threw “food and garbage” on Bowman. None. All we have is a report from a guy who claims he saw it on a video. OK, where’s the video?

  50. jhop86 says: Jan 20, 2014 1:32 PM

    Hawks fans throwing things at him as he’s being carted off shows you how much class the whole franchise has

  51. tved12 says: Jan 20, 2014 1:33 PM

    The way Seaguls fans sound on here, if I didn’t know any better I would think the Seahawks had been the best team in the NFC for the last decade. Sure you’ve got a good team and you won the NFC this year, but SF has been there the last 3 years.

    Also, you Seachickens are no better than my Vikings, what with your zero SuperBowl wins. I’ve never seen a fan base act so good with nothing to show for it.

  52. bullcharger says: Jan 20, 2014 1:34 PM

    That was a horrible injury, and because it was a critical play, they showed it over, and over again. Impossible to watch that. Honestly, if he has an MCL and ACL injury and the MCL heals on it’s own before his surgery, that will be a miracle. That looked career ending.

  53. winninaintsinnin says: Jan 20, 2014 2:01 PM

    Let’s see a video of food and garbage thrown at Bowman.

    NFC Championship. Everyone with cell phones. And magically there is no footage, just the claims from a San Fran fan watching on TV and putting it on Facebook.

    The one shot you can find shows only popcorn falling from above after he enters the tunnel. No food or debris on the cart or ground.

    But keep hating. You’re going to feel even worse in a couple weeks.

  54. harbaughsohard49er says: Jan 20, 2014 2:06 PM

    Seattle fans who are congratulating us,thanks for having some class. Those other fans from teams who suck and will suck again next year, just quit hatin on the Niners and hating on Kaep and Harbaugh. Every team has a couple guys that are easy to hate, no one more than Sherman. Anyone who saw the game and says we didnt get hosed on the roughing the kicker call and says it didnt change the game is just delusional. Mike Perreira came on live and said if you hit the plant foot its roughing. Seattle ended up getting 3 points there and our drive ended,without those 3 points,worse case at games end we are kicking the tying field goal on 4th down so we play that 3rd down more conservative. We have Marcus Lattimore and Tank Carradine waiting in the wings along with 13 or more draft picks this year so anyone who thinks they have seen the last of us, keep dreamin! Congrats seattle and GO Broncos!!!!!

  55. winninaintsinnin says: Jan 20, 2014 2:13 PM

    How about your player decking our gunner out of bounds on a play where the returned fumbled? Was that pro-Seattle?

    Or how about Kap kicking the ball away from a Seattle player on his fumble with no call?

    Watch the footage. The punter came down on the rusher. The rusher didn’t run into the plant foot.

  56. pencilmonkeymagic says: Jan 20, 2014 2:40 PM

    Incredible player. Get well soon.

    (And everyone has one idiot fan in their stands. So enough of the holier-than-thou remarks)

  57. r8dernation says: Jan 20, 2014 2:42 PM

    Those injuries are really not that painful at first, it’s later when it starts to get stiff. I also blowed up (thanks Emmitt) my ACL and tore my miniscus playing football (touch) and had the ball, and didn’t let go of the ball until after I was already on the ground. Did I get carted off the field? Did I get to ride in an ambulance? No, my buddies help me to the sideline, I hobbled to my car and I drove home 14 miles with a missing right ACL and had to left foot the brake. That’s how I roll!

  58. aceinthehole12 says: Jan 20, 2014 2:56 PM

    I’m way more concerned over this than the loss yesterday or what Sherman said. Feel horribly for Bowman..can’t wait til he’s healthy and back in a Niners jersey.

  59. mvp43 says: Jan 20, 2014 3:05 PM

    Every play should be reviewable.. period.

    If the games last 10 minutes longer, then so be it. Im sick and tired these blown calls.

  60. wareagle1961 says: Jan 20, 2014 3:21 PM

    I’m not really a Niner fan but Bowman is a player …..

    here’s to a speedy recovery

  61. jgedgar70 says: Jan 20, 2014 3:42 PM

    A note of hope and a note of caution for your 49ers fans…

    Thomas Davis of the Panthers tore the same ACL three years in a row (2009-11). He came back last year, played very well, and this year was probably the best he’s ever played. He’s every bit as fast as when we drafted him in ’05. He should be an example for Bowman to follow.

    Now for the caution: Bob Griffin. He came back WAY too soon. Never did get right this year, if you ask me. If I were NB, my goal would be to be ready for day one of camp in 2015.

  62. thefox61 says: Jan 20, 2014 3:59 PM

    Geez did ANY of you watch the game? Yes it was a fumble and Bowman recovered and it was a terrible call. But if they would’ve made the correct call the 49ers would’ve had the ball at the one yard line and trying to prevent a safety. On the very next play Lynch fumbled and the 49ers recovered at the 15. Complain about the bad call all you want but the outcome ultimately favored the 49ers.

  63. ballhawkers12s says: Jan 20, 2014 4:00 PM

    One of the most gruesome plays ever from a great camera view. Hope for a great recovery because as a seahawks fan I can’t help but respect how good of a player and heart and soul of a division rival. Get well soon

  64. djshnooks says: Jan 20, 2014 4:07 PM

    His teammate, Eric Reid, did it to him!

  65. doctorart2013 says: Jan 20, 2014 4:08 PM

    SHAME on the NFL for a player such as Bowman to make an unbelievable play on the goal line, blow his frikken knee out, and NOT get the recovery on that play…SHAMEFUL!!!!!

  66. kingcrusher says: Jan 20, 2014 4:19 PM

    Painful injury, hope he recovers quickly! I love good rivalries, but hate to see any player get injured. I just love the game!
    As for the fumble and them not getting the ball, that is sad, but in the end, they actually got the next fumble in WAY better position, so it actually worked out for their benefit.
    Way to go Seattle, I like your team, but I don’t like your fans.

  67. orivar says: Jan 20, 2014 4:33 PM

    I don’t know why people are surprised that there were people that threw stuff. You’re in a stadium with beer and a couple thousand people, there will always be that group that are jerks. It happens everywhere.

  68. cascadehawk says: Jan 20, 2014 4:44 PM

    “along with 13 or more draft picks this year so anyone who thinks they have seen the last of us, keep dreamin!”

    All 13 draft picks for hairball means is 11 cuts prior to the regular season.

  69. johngaltwho says: Jan 20, 2014 4:51 PM

    Have you ever seen a more striking example of physical toughness? The guy held on to the ball going to the ground while we watched his knee being ripped to shreds. If I was holding a football at home watching the game, I woulda dropped it at the sight of what happened to his knee. Damn, I still dont like the 49ers but ya have to respect Navarro Bowman.

  70. 8to80texansblog says: Jan 20, 2014 5:26 PM

    It was horrible that the Niner’s didn’t get the ball but how poetic of justice that Lynch fumbles it back to them the very next play….

    Reminded me of 2012 Outback Bowl where Michigan is awarded a 1st down after the measurement OBVIOUSLY showed he was short on a 4th down conversion try. Everyone knows the iconic Clowney play that happened after that… “South Carolina deserves to have it… and they do!”

  71. stoptrippn says: Jan 20, 2014 5:49 PM

    Pete is classless. He cheats in every aspect of his life.

  72. orcahawk says: Jan 20, 2014 7:01 PM

    Okay – SOMEONE needs to post a video of fans throwing food at Bowman.

    One clip. From one phone or camera.

    One. Anyone?

  73. hess97 says: Jan 21, 2014 11:42 PM

    Interception. Reviewable. Interceptions are reviewable.

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