Several key players on the San Francisco 49ers have gone under the knife this offseason, as running back Frank Gore, inside linebacker NaVorro Bomwn, guard Mike Iupati, and defensive end Ray McDonald had surgeries to repair injuries of varying severity. You can add another star in Patrick Willis to that list, as the Sacramento Bee’s Matt Barrows reports that Willis recently had surgery on his left thumb and is currently in a cast.
Not much is known about the nature of Willis’s injury, though it is possible that he suffered it in last week’s loss to the Seattle Seahawks. The 29-year-old has had a history of hand injuries, so it’s possible that this is an injury that’s been bothering him throughout the season. I doubt it, though, otherwise Willis wouldn’t be in a cast right now.
He should be fine for all offseason activities, and he had himself another great season in 2013 with 104 tackles and some more great all-around work. However, Bowman has quietly become an even better player than Willis, and that just speaks to how talented Bowman has become and how great the league’s best LB duo is getting. Both of those guys are monsters against the run, are among the smartest players at the position, and have more than enough athleticism to win most of their individual matchups in coverage.