The race for NFL most valuable player heats up



Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes looks like the frontrunner for the MVP race so far this season.


With the NFL season more than halfway complete, the race for the most valuable player is in full swing. Among the contenders for the award are Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes and Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson. Coming into this past week, Wilson was the frontrunner. Following an abysmal performance, however, the race is now wide open for the second half of the season.

According to ESPN metrics, Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers has the second-highest odds of winning the award. He has been playing lights out this year, throwing for 24 touchdowns (good enough for third in the NFL) and only two interceptions. He has a quarterback rating of 87.7, which is tops in the league. Rodgers has thrown for 2,253 passing yards so far this season,  which is ninth best in the NFL. I would give Rodgers a strong case right now in the MVP race, due to his consistently strong play and his potent offense with guys like Davante Adams and Aaron Jones.

Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady was also improving his MVP odds coming into last week, but his poor performance and his team’s ugly loss on Sunday Night Football likely hurt his chances. Brady is fourth in the NFL in touchdowns with 20 and is sixth in yards with 2,398 on the season. He has also thrown seven interceptions and is No. 16 in quarterback rating with a 67.4 rating. These glaring numbers and his recent poor performance really hinder his odds at the award this season.   

“Let Russ Cook” was a phrase many in sports media were saying prior to the start of the season, meaning to let Wilson do his thing. The first half of the season gave many of these pundits reason to be excited, as he had some impressive games where it looked like he was the favorite to win the award. People were willing to overlook his bad games because he offset those with some great one. Last week, however, he threw two interceptions and lost two fumbles. His performance last week was poor, and Wilson is now near the top of the league in interceptions with eight. Wilson is also first in touchdowns with 28 and fourth in both passing yards with 2,541 and quarterback rating with 80.5. However, pending a crazy statistical stretch without any interceptions, Wilson is unlikely to take the award this season.

Reigning super bowl MVP Patrick Mahomes is quietly bringing himself into the conversation. Mahomes is first in the NFL with only one interception and second in the categories of yards (2,687), touchdowns (25) and quarterback rating (84.8). There really isn’t any downside to his game this year. All of these numbers compiled on top of his team playing exceptionally well puts Mahomes in the driver’s seat for the award this season, which would be the second of his career.