clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

NaVorro Bowman’s full interview talking disrespect, being the best, trades and more is out

New, comments

Bowman conducted a lengthy interview with 49ers beat writer Eric Branch and it’s well worth a look.

San Francisco 49ers v Seattle Seahawks Photo by Steve Dykes/Getty Images

On Tuesday, we talked about the Q&A between San Francisco 49ers middle linebacker NaVorro Bowman and Eric Branch of the San Francisco Chronicle. At that time, only a few quotes from the full hour-long interview were included in Branch’s initial story, but he has since gone on to post a transcript of the entire thing.

It’s worth a full read. The initial article talked about Bowman’s feelings of being underestimated, overlooked and disrespected. He’s done his job as well as any linebacker in the league when he’s healthy, and other than his injuries, there’s no reason to doubt his ability going forward.

He thinks those injuries aren’t enough, at least until there is game film of him being a diminished player. In Bowman’s mind, he hasn’t lost a step, and I tend to follow with that line of thinking given the caliber of player I’ve seen him be with my own eyes.

The full interview gets into a lot more. He talks about trust between himself, Kyle Shanahan and John Lynch, and it’s not your typical “player talks about coach/general manager” fare. Bowman says he hasn’t established a level of trust with them, and that will only come once it’s clear that both of them are doing their jobs. Bowman can’t prove it until the regular season gets underway and he starts earning his paychecks.

The most interesting aspect, to me, is when Bowman talks about playing for another team or retiring. Bowman says that he has respect for the 49ers as an organization, and when asked if he’d consider retiring upon being traded, Bowman offered that the NFL isn’t important enough to him to “go somewhere else and try to breathe another color.”

He talks about control — he feels in the NFL he’s been in control of his own destiny given his high level of play. He’s played extremely well and he’s been paid extremely well. If he is traded, he suggests that this takes away some of his control and I totally see where he’s coming from.

It’s easy to read a quote here or there and take from it that Bowman simply cares about the money — not that that would be a problem, he’s doing a job and people lose sight of that far too often — but it’s more than that. Respect to him isn’t just people thinking he’s good, it’s about people thinking he’s one of the best, and more than anything, worthwhile.

There’s a lot to unpack here, and for now, I’m going to leave it at that and let you read Branch’s excellent, excellent interview. Maybe we’ll look at this a little bit more after the 49ers see the field against the Carolina Panthers in Week 1.