After grabbing the attention through a remarkable pick-six against Atlanta and being a force against the Arizona Cardinals, NaVorro Bowman became the NFC Defensive Player of the Month for December.
Bowman had 63 tackles, three sacks, two forced fumbles, a fumble recovery and two interceptions in the month of December. He is the only player in the last 20 years to have more than 45 tackles, three sacks, two interceptions, two forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries and an interception return for a touchdown in the same month, according to the NFL.
The fourth-year linebacker was initially ranked No. 37 in the 2013 edition of the NFL Network's Top 100 NFL players.
This is the second consecutive season he has been named to the Pro Bowl as he has teamed up with Patrick Willis in every season. He became the sole leader on defense in both Week 4 and Week 5 when Willis became inactive due to a groin injury.
When asked about Bowman being a candidate for defensive player of the year, Tarell Brown "absolutely" said he should be. Patrick Willis has supported him as both he and Bowman have fed off each other throughout this season. He also said Bowman has his vote to be the defensive player of the year.
"He's my brother [and I'm] glad to see him do well," Willis said on Wednesday. "We're always happy for the next man's success. We hold each other accountable. When he looks at me and I look at him, we count on each other to back each other up. We're always communicating."
Bowman leads the team and finished ranked fifth in the NFL with 145 tackles. According to the NFL, Bowman is the fifth 49ers linebacker to be named Defensive Player of the Month, joining Charles Haley (twice) Tim Harris (December 1992), Ken Norton (October 1995) and Aldon Smith (November 2012).