CBS Sports NFL analyst Pete Prisco is back with his annual lists of overrated and underrated players. Prisco looks at each team and picks an overrated player and an underrated player for them. He posted the overrated list first, and for the San Francisco 49ers he picked inside linebacker NaVorro Bowman. Here’s what he had to say about the selection:
He deserves a ton of credit for getting back on the field after his awful knee injury in January of 2013. He missed all of 2014, but came back to play 16 games last season. He wasn't the same player, which is why he's on this list. There are some who actually think he was the same type of player he was before the injury. That's why he's here. I think that might happen this year.
This is actually a pretty reasonable and accurate take on Bowman. I also think Prisco looked at the 49ers roster and did not see many players that would be hyped up too much. The team is viewed by many in the national media as having one of the most talent deficient rosters in the league. It opens the door for plenty of underrated options, but not many overrated options.
Bowman made a big comeback last year after missing 2014 due to multiple torn knee ligaments. He showed some signs of his old self, but it was clear he was not at the same level as he was back prior to the knee injury. His work in coverage is the area he most needs to improve, but with a full season under his belt, and another offseason, I’m optimistic about the coming season. He’s only 28, so he’s still in the prime of his career.
Bowman has said his knee feels better than it did last year, so we should find out pretty quickly where things stand. I have to think opposing offensive coordinators will target him in the passing game early in the season to see just where that knee and his coverage stands.