With all the chaos that is happening with COVID-19, sports entertain and give fans a break from reality. Entertaining players to watch this season are Russell Wilson, Patrick Mahomes, Aaron Rodgers, and Josh Allen. All of these dominant quarterbacks are in the run for the Most Valuable Player award for the 2020-2021 season. With the season over the halfway point, it is important to note each player’s progress this season to look over the odds for them to win the MVP. This article is going to break down the top 4 prospects to become the MVP.
The front runner for MVP this season is Russell Wilson as he is favored to win as his odds are +125. Russell Wilson has been a consistent force within the NFL and he is finally receiving his recognition/respect he deserves. His current statistics as of week 9 are 2,541 yards (4th in the league), 28 touchdowns (1st), 8 interceptions (30th) and a QBR of 80.4 (4th). It is also important to note that a team's record plays a role in choosing the MVP season. With that being said the Seahawks have a record of 6-2.Russell Wilson has shown this year that he has one of the best deep balls and is still a dual threat with his legs. The statistics prove this improvement as through nine weeks he is only three touchdowns behind his 2019 seasons where he played a full season (16 games). Wilson is on track to almost double his rushing yards compared to the 2019 season. Wilson has accumulated 265 rushing yards so far compared to his 342 last season. Looking towards the future, Wilson has an easy end to his schedule as he plays three out of four NFC East teams who are heavily struggling this year. This increases his case for MVP. Teammates such as D.K Metcalf have vouched for his quarterback as he has stated “Russ for MVP Train”. Important statistic to keep in mind is that Wilson has not won the MVP throughout his career but the historic pace that Wilson is on stands as a heavy front runner for MVP. Also note that the Seahawks are undefeated at home even without the “12th man”.
Coming off his first Super Bowl victory, Patrick Mahomes is on fire once again proving his place in MVP talks. Mahomes’ odds for MVP is currently +200 listing him in second place. With a dynamic offense that the Chiefs have, Mahomes can lead the Chiefs to an impressive record this year. The Chiefs are currently 8-1 with no signs of slowing down. Mahomes stats are very impressive as well as he is second in yards as he has 2,687 yards, second for touchdowns with 25, and first for interceptions as he only has one, and a QBR of 84.9. Comparing his numbers with his 2018 MVP season, Mahomes is on pace to break his yards by over 300 yards and reach 50 touchdowns once again. Unlike the Seahawks, the Chiefs have a more challenging end to their schedule as they have to play the Buccaneers, Saints, Raiders, Dolphins, Falcons, and the Chargers. Although these are all winnable games by the defending Super Bowl champions all of these teams have the potential to give Kansas City a run for their money. With the motive to win back to back championships and with his huge contract signing, Mahomes has every right and motive to win and be in the talks to become the MVP.
As Stephan A. Smith would say, “HEESS A BAAD MAN!” A healthy Aaron Rodgers this season has proven to many fans that he is still a dominant force within the league. Rodgers is set at +350 odds ranking him third behind Wilson and Mahomes. Rodgers has solid statistics with 2,253 yards which is tenth in the league, 24 touchdowns ranking him third in league, 2 interceptions (tied-2nd), and a QBR of 87.6 which is the best in the league.
The Packers are currently 6-2 which are first in the NFC North. Rodgers previously won the award in 2011 and 2014 where he held one of the best touchdown to interception ratios. It has been known that Rodgers has not played with the best of talents but puts up impressive numbers. Which confused Packers fans as they drafted quarterback Jordan Love with the 26th pick in the 2020 NFL Draft. This may have caused a spark in Rodgers’ competitive side as how well he is playing. With the greatest of all time talks having swayed away from Rodgers, adding a third MVP would tie Rodgers with great players such as Tom Brady and Johnny Unitas. The Packers have a decent schedule ahead of them with three divisional games (2 with Bears, 1 with Lions), a strong defense with the Colts, winnable game against the Eagles, and promising offenses with the Panthers and Titans. Rodgers is more motivated than ever to win his second Super Bowl and his drive can potentially win him the MVP in the second half of the season. Rodgers confidence in himself is prevalent as he mentioned on the Pat McAfee show, "I sometimes laugh when people talk about down years for me because a lot of times down years for me are career years for most quarterbacks”.
Josh Allen has rallied the Bills to 7-2 which most likely will win the AFC East, which is the first time since 1995. Without a dominant Patriots team with Tom Brady’s departure, Allen has taken throne with a very impressive year. Allen’s line for MVP is +2200 ranking him fourth in the league. Allen has put up 2,587 yards (third in NFL), 19 touchdowns (sixth in NFL), 5 interceptions (tied-11th NFL), and a QBR of 79.2 which is sixth in the league. Allen is a very dynamic player as he has one of the strongest arms in the league and has the ability to run effectively with 241 rushing yards this year. With an impressive win over the MVP front runner Russell Wilson and the Seahawks, Allen deserves to be in the talks for the award as the Bills are a very slept on team. A factor that is helping Allen this year is the addition of Stephon Diggs WR who has one of the best route running within the league. Bills have a tough schedule ahead of them as they play two divisional games (Patriots and Dolphins), Cardinals, Chargers, Steelers, Broncos, and 49ers.
It is a very tough race for becoming the MVP in a very unique year especially with COVID-19 opt outs, but these four players mentioned have put up a very entertaining season and deserve validation. The second half of the season and the race for MVP is definitely something to keep an eye on.