Yes, the season is the best part of 4 and a half months away. yes, the NFL draft is in a couple of weeks. But hey, if you aren’t fishing first thing in the morning, you aren’t gonna get the good fish!
Even with the NFL draft happening in a few weeks time, you are hard pressed to say that even with this class of talent coming through, they will not be troubling the MVP voting in their first year.
The MVP race was a fascinating one last year and for the most part, mimicked a topsy turvy Gold Cup race. Russell Wilson was a shoe in at the half way point, only to fade away like Silvianco Conti up the Cheltenham hill in the final few weeks.
The battle came down to the 2 title contenders from last year in their respective division, Aaron Rodgers and Josh Allen with the NFC future Hall of Fame inductee Rodgers scooping the prize for the 2nd time in his career. The voting was not even close when push came to shove, which was a little surprising with Rodgers (44 votes) picking up 88% of the vote, Allen picking up 8% (4) and Patrick Mahomes (2) also picking up a couple of votes, probably from those that also like ketchup on their steak.
Is there any value in the early stages of this year?
The 3 that received votes last year spearhead the betting with Mahomes, like he will probably be each year until he retires, is once again the favourite, Rodgers not too far behind and then comes Allen, who’ll like attract some interest and wagers at his current odds.
As we say every year, you need a story to help aid reasoning as to why you should win the award, and you also need to be playing your best football when it’s more meaningful…in December.
If Josh Allen continues his current upward trajectory, that 14/1 could look huge come the end of the season as the QB out of Wyoming is quickly winning everyone over. Allen is getting 13/1 in some spots, but if you can get him at 14/1, absolutely do it.
He couldn’t buy a friend when he first entered the league and talking of friends, the acquisition of Stefon Diggs has to be up there with one of the best in recent years as it’s really helped unlock the offense.
Completion %, Passing Yardage, TDs and QB Rating all rising steeper than a tricky part of Ben Nevis and whilst it’s unlikely that the trajectory continues to flow in it’s current direction, even a small step forward in year 4 could be enough, especially with the popularity his is acquiring and the Bills are becoming more relevant and more involved in the “contenders” conversation.
Of the main contenders, it’s hard for me to take the “Rodgers’ Rate” or the “Patrick Price” at this stage as they have won MVP awards before and it’s difficult for both of these guys to win back to back Super Bowls in Rodgers case or to surpass crazy high numbers which saw Mahomes take the crown in 2018.
Kyler Murray and the Arizona Cardinals have tooled up a few weapons on boths sides of the ball but it feels as though he will be hamstrung by Kliff Kingsbury whilst he is at the helm but also in a tough division where Matthew Stafford now finds himself in too but if the Rams can notch up 12/13 wins, Stafford could be attractive at the odds, considering he is now free from the stalling Lions back in Motor City. Lamar Jackson, for reasons unknown, just seem to be fade away as being a perennial front runner for this award and the utopia season in 2019 which saw him take the crown, will be hard to recall.
Russell Wilson, still without an MVP vote in his CAREER, seems that his Seattle team could be started to regress and his murmurs of unhappiness make him an easy pass whilst Tom Brady could again be interesting considering the run the Buccaneers went on after their week 13 bye, though it’s just as much the defence as it was him calling the shots and pulling the strings. The narrative is already there though as he would be the ripe old age of 44 should he be able to lift the MVP award for the 4th time, his previous 3 of course coming in New England. Now that would be the icing on the “I’m more integral to the Patriots’ dynasty than Bill Belichick” cake.
Justin Herbert, who won (some might say controversially) the Offensive rookie of the year award in 2020, has a tough ask in a division with Patrick Mahomes. Usurp the Chiefs somehow and his odds could look silly.
Dak Prescott was on pace to scorch passing records before a fractured and dislocated ankle put paid to his 2020 season. At 33/1 and having one of the NFL’s most loaded offences, he could go well at a price in a division where wins could be easy to come by.
Best of the rest:
There is no need to place a wager on Deshaun Watson unless he finds a new home before the start of the 2020 season, with the Texans projected to be the number 1 overall pick in next year’s draft. This is regardless of outcome from the lawsuits currently in the queue against him that seem to be getting weaker as each day passes. Baker Mayfield rebounded somewhat in his 3rd year, but a run-centric attack is not conjusive to helping him win the award, despite how well his Progressive commercials will have set him up to accept the award with valour and charisma.
Christian McCaffrey finds himself atop of the Non QBs in the betting at 40/1 to win the award. If he isn’t winning it in the season where he had 1,000/1,000, I cant see how he ever wins it. Derrick Henry (50/1) had over 2,000 rush yards in 2020 and didn’t win the award, so who knows how many yards he would need to run for to be able to be in the reckoning for MVP.
If you want a fairytale of sorts, Trevor Lawrence is 100/1 to scoop the award in his rookie year. You have to go back all the way to 1969 for Wes Unseld and 1960 when Wilt Chamberlain both won offensive rookie and MVP awards in their 1st year in the league.