With three weeks remaining in the NFL’s regular season, the MVP race is down to a two-pony sprint between Patrick Mahomes and Aaron Rodgers. According to a recent update by DraftKings, Mahomes is -200 odds to win his second MVP in the last three seasons. Rodgers is the second favorite on the NFL futures board at +175 odds to win the MVP for the third time in his career.
In the previous 13 seasons, a running back won the NFL MVP only once. Quarterbacks continue to reign supreme in the modern era, which doesn’t bode well for Tennessee Titans RB Derrick Henry.
If Henry has a strong finish, he could rush over 2,000 yards. Unfortunately, MVP voters are biased toward quarterbacks. Twenty-five years earlier, Henry and Dalvin Cook would be among the top favorites to win MVP.
|2020 NFL MVP ODDS|
- Patrick Mahomes -200
- Aaron Rodgers +175
- Josh Allen +1600
- Derrick Henry +5000
- Russell Wilson +6000
- Tom Brady +15000
- Kyler Murray +15000
- Ben Roethlisberger +15000
- Dalvin Cook +25000
Earlier in the NFL season, it looked like Russell Wilson would run away with the MVP. After a torrid start, Wilson played like a superhero. After entering the December doldrums, the Seahawks cooled down substantially, and Wilson played like a mere mortal.
Josh Allen, the third-ranked passer in the NFL, led the Buffalo Bills to their best record since 1991. Allen is third on the NFL MVP betting board at +1600 odds.
New School: Mahomes Again?
In 2018, Mahomes won the MVP and tossed 50 touchdowns, but he didn’t win the Super Bowl. Last season, Lamar Jackson won the MVP, but Mahomes won the Super Bowl. This season, Mahomes has the inside track to the MVP, and Kansas City is the consensus Super Bowl favorite.
Mahomes leads the second-highest scoring team (31 ppg) in the league. He’s the top passer in the league with 4,208 yards. With 33 touchdowns, Mahomes is tied for third-most passing touchdowns. He’s also ranked #2 with a QBR of 84.7. Only Rodgers has a better rating.
|NFL MVP WINNER LIST (Since 2010)|
- 2010 Tom Brady
- 2011 Aaron Rodgers
- 2012 Adrian Peterson
- 2013 Peyton Manning
- 2014 Aaron Rodgers
- 2015 Cam Newton
- 2016 Matt Ryan
- 2017 Tom Brady
- 2018 Patrick Mahomes
- 2019 Lamar Jackson
Last season, Mahomes gutted out multiple injuries. This year, he’s already surpassed his 2019 numbers (yards and touchdowns) in one fewer game. He will fall short of his career-high of 55 touchdowns, but 40 is well within reach.
Mahomes tossed two or more touchdowns in all but two games. Through 13 games, he’s connected on three or more touchdowns at least five times. It came as no surprise to see Mahomes light up the New York Jets for five touchdowns in a blowout in early November.
Old School: A-Rod Throwback
Rodgers, 37, won the MVP twice in his career, with his first coming in 2011. Since Matt LaFleur took over as head coach, Rodgers has looked more like his former self from his last MVP campaign in 2014.
Rodgers spearheads the highest-scoring offense in the NFL (31.5 ppg). He also leads the NFL with 39 touchdowns, is tied for third with 3,685 passing yards, and only tossed four interceptions. He’s closing in on his career-record of 45 touchdowns (2011).
“There’s not many guys that have won three, so that would definitely mean a lot,” said Rodgers. “It’s nice to be back in the conversation.”
Peyton Manning holds the record with five MVP awards. Only four players won the MVP three times: Jim Brown, Brett Favre, Johnny Unitas, and Tom Brady.
This seems like it could be Rodgers’ last chance at another MVP, whereas Mahomes still has a decade or more left of peak productivity. Either way, if MVP voters are feeling nostalgic, they’ll end up voting for Rodgers.
If you follow the public’s money, it looks like the Green Bay Packers and Kansas City Chiefs could meet in Super Bowl 55.