NaVorro Bowman was widely viewed as a Defensive Player of the Year contender, but his candidacy clearly didn’t resonate among those who actually vote for the award.

The 49ers inside linebacker did not receive a vote, while Carolina middle linebacker Luke Kuechly won the award which was announced tonight at the “NFL Honors” in New York.

Kuechly received 19 votes, Indianapolis defensive end Robert Mathis (11 ½ votes) was second and Seattle safety Earl Thomas (7 ½) was third. St. Louis defensive end Robert Quinn (6), Seattle cornerback Richard Sherman (4) and Houston defensive end J.J. Watt (2) also received votes. The award is voted on by 50 media members who regularly cover the league.

Bowman, a first-team All-Pro, ranked fifth in the NFL in tackles (145) and added 11 passes defended, five sacks, four forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries and two interceptions, one of which he returned 89 yards for a touchdown.

Kuechly, a first-team All-Pro, ranked fourth in tackles (156) and added 11 passes defended, four interceptions and two sacks. He did not have a forced fumble or a fumble recovery.