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The NFL's best inside linebackers, No. 5: NaVorro Bowman

Bowman returned from injury and was the rare bright spot on the league's 29th-ranked defense.

Bowman missed the 2014 season after a gruesome ACL tear in the NFC Championship against the Seahawks. But he returned in 2015 to start 16 games despite health concerns—a rare bright spot on a defense that ranked 29th in the league in yards allowed. He finished second in the NFL with 19 pressures and also garnered the second-most All-Pro votes, and has played 16 games in every season except for '14. His pass coverage suffered upon his return, but expect him to improve there with more time to rebuild the explosiveness that the injury sapped. And this time he'll have the help of Chip Kelly's new age training staff. Bowman made a statement by showing up for the first day of the team's voluntary conditioning program, and at 28 years old, he still has multiple prime years ahead of him. His style might not perfectly fit the modern style of play, but there are few linebackers you'd rather have on running downs.

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