Drew Brees leads the way in what is turning out to be a three-horse race to be crowned this season's MVP in the NFL.
This award started with two of the greatest QBs to ever play the game as its favourites, last year’s winner, Tom Brady, and two-time MVP, Aaron Rodgers.
Things were quickly shaken with the emergence of second year Kansas City QB Patrick Mahomes, who right out the gate set the league alight, torching defences every week. Keen to improve on his runners up medal last year, Todd Gurley has been unstoppable, in that he literally hadn’t been stopped from finding the end-zone yet this season until last night’s game with the Chiefs.
It looked as though a two horse race was developing until veteran QB and record breaker Drew Brees put together a string of performances that has seen him firmly between Mahomes and Gurley in the MVP race.
Jacob Blangsted-Barnor runs through the big three in the market..
It would have been thought that if Brees can’t win MVP in any of his five 5,000+ yard seasons, then what chance does he have in a season with two studs like Mahomes and Gurley in the mix, but never sleep on Brees.
He finally has a Pro-Bowl WR, in Michael Thomas, something he has never had in his career somehow, he recently beat what most people thought was the best team in the NFL, the LA Rams, he is on course to have a career and NFL record high completion percentage of 77.3% and has only thrown one interception so far this season. Add that all up then sprinkle on top the fact he just became the NFL’s all-time leading passer and you get a pretty compelling case for him to finally win an award he has long deserved.
The Rams have talent everywhere and, while they might not be the offensive powerhouse they are now without Gurley, they would still be a top level team. The Chiefs were still a playoff team with Alex Smith and so as much as Mahomes took them to another level, it’s hard to argue the drop off would be as big as Drew Brees not being on the Saints, and so if we are to take the title and meaning of the award to be literally the most valuable of the three to their team, that has to be Drew Brees. Not to mention his most recent 4 touchdown, 0 interception dismantling of the Eagles’ defense.
Mahomes was the bookie’s favourite up until this week and fan’s favourite to watch this season. It seems Andy Reid handled the situation perfectly, letting Mahomes sit for a year behind veteran pro Alex Smith before deciding he was ready to start and trading away Smith.
Mahomes’ season debut was an incredible 4 passing touchdown demolition of the Chargers and since then he has gone on to throw for 300+ yards in 8 games and thrown 4+ passing touchdowns on 5 occasions. We have seen him make throws some of the best would struggle to do and he looks set to take the Chiefs deep into the playoffs in his first year as a starter.
Mahomes opened up the Rams defense, scoring 51 points and becoming the first team to score 50+ points and go on to lose the game, but also showed some mistakes, turning the ball over multiple times, including a pick 6 that definitely hurts his case with a QB like Brees, who is taking care of the ball very well, closing in on him. By its nature, the award often favours quarterbacks over running backs and if you take the title literally then it should, quarterbacks are more valuable than running backs and this helps Mahomes’ case over Gurley.
As mentioned, he had scored in every single game until last night and leads the league in both rushing and scoring. Last season 19 touchdowns were enough to land him a close second spot to the crown, however this season he has 17 and there is still six games left to play.
The fourth year former Georgia running back is on pace for 25 touchdowns, which would be the most scored in a single season in the past 12 years and sit him fifth on the list of most scored in a single season, where all bar one players above him on that list have won the MVP, and all this in a league where each year the passing game becomes more QB friendly and therefore more pass heavy.
Gurley was kept quiet in the 1st half against the Chiefs but wasn’t exactly needed as the Rams passing attack was able to undo the Chiefs. Gurley and the Rams got the win over the Chiefs but it was Drew Brees who was probably rubbing his hands together after watching Gurley fail to score and Mahomes throw multiple interceptions.