NaVorro Bowman had quite a day. The San Francisco 49ers middle linebacker was ranked second in the league in tackles going into the 49ers contest against Chicago. 14 stops later, Bowman was leading all defensive players in tackles. Following the game, Bowman spoke to reporters and talked about how the 49ers defense stepped up, where this team is headed, and how he thinks there might be something special:
What was the range of emotion, you were going through with the win?
This feeling, you know, a few games as we played well but fell short, so you know that same kind of emotion and feeling came back. So we're right there, and I think today showed you know what we been trying to you know get to all the players just keep fighting no matter what's happening in the game and let that decide who wins the game, but you know if you let that affect the adversity affect your play you wouldn't have the shot like we did today.
On Jimmie Ward's interception return for a touchdown:
Well it was just the preparation this week. Listening to the coaches, you know understanding Jay, he likes to let the play clock get down you know very low, just to see what the defenses wanted to do. So he made that check in that situation we were in, I knew the screen was coming, I just had to communicate that to all 11 guys and that was the right call and Jimmie made a great play.
How did you communicate?
I yelled it out.
So not a whole lot of secrets?
Not a whole lot of secrets, Jay knew. When he came back on the field, he said, "You got me" so it's all in how much you study tape during the week.
You've spoken a couple times about the youth of this team and defense and seemed little frustrated this season. Have you seen some progress and what do you think of that?
I talked to the defense yesterday, and it was a little bit of the expectations that everyone had on us. And it was our job to get everything right as quick as possible. And I just explained to them that it's a process and we built this process. Up to this point, we played great football, we just kept falling short and today was a chance for us to just not go out here and act like we doing a job, but let this affect the years to come and for the young guys to know, this is the NFL; You're going to lose, you're going to win, but you have to continue to play all 16 games. And that's what's really going on. The guys are staying on edge but still putting in the same hours all week and it's showing that we're not giving up.
On Blaine Gabbert's athleticism:
I've seen Blaine run. He's got a little savvyness to him. and we love it as his teamates and I think it's showing out there the way the offense is really playing for him and it was exciting to see him run down that field.
On the play where he went under concussion protocol:
Well I read the screen and the guy cut it up inside of me and I wanted to dive in and I dove in, but the pursuit-- I think it was Quinton Dial, his knee and his shin hit me right on the top of my head. I was kinda woozy and I went through the concussion protocol and passed all the tests and returned.
On the importance of this win:
You know this is, you can't just single this out it's just what you have to do as a football team in the NFL, No matter what they're doing or what we're doing we all have to do our job and it sounds so cliched saying, "do your job", but really, when we go back and look at the film some of the things that made us lose some of those games was just because of guys just trying to do too much and I think we're starting to get the idea of what really makes a good football team and that's everyone just doing their job
On what's in store for this team:
Yeah, I really see that we could really have something special here. Maybe it didn't come as fast as we wanted, but we can definitely see the process and it's looking good for us.