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49ers reward inside linebacker NaVorro Bowman with five-year contract extension

The San Francisco 49ers and inside linebacker NaVorro Bowman have reached agreement on a five-year contract extension through the 2018 season.

With Bowman's new deal, it keeps one of the best and most-feared linebacking tandems in the NFL together for the long haul — as fellow inside linebacker Patrick Willis is signed through 2016.

The 24-year-old Bowman, a third-round draft pick in 2010 out of Penn State, has 100 tackles, two sacks and an interception this season as a second-year starter for the NFC West-leading Niners (8-2-1). As a rookie, his 20 special-teams tackles ranked third in the NFL.

In addition to Bowman and Willis, the team's other two starting linebackers are signed at least for the next three seasons — Ahmad Brooks through 2017 and Aldon Smith through 2015.

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