Are you looking to wager on the NFL MVP winner for the 2020 regular season? Well, it’s quite simple: Pick the starting quarterback on a team that you forecast will have one of the league’s three of four best records.
That has been the trend for years, and there’s no reason it shouldn’t continue in this very unusual campaign during a coronavirus pandemic. Quarterbacks are the Top 12 MVP favourites for 2020 on the NFL odds.
Second-Year QB MVP Trend?
Actually, here’s an even better trend: Pick a second-year quarterback on a Super Bowl contender. The winner has been in that scenario the past two seasons. Kansas City’s Patrick Mahomes was in his second season in 2018 when he won MVP, and Baltimore’s Lamar Jackson was last year when he did.
The player who fits that description with the shortest odds at Sports Interaction is Arizona’s Kyler Murray at +800. He had a very good first year on the way to winning NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year honours. Murray, the first player the Cardinals had taken No. 1 overall in the draft since 1958, became only the second rookie ever to throw for at least 3,500 yards and rush for a minimum of 500 yards. Murray was the only rookie QB last year to start every game and set a league rookie record with one streak of 211 straight passes without an interception.
Murray’s chances of winning an MVP this year certainly improved when the Cardinals stole All-Pro receiver DeAndre Hopkins from the Houston Texans in a stunning March trade. However, Arizona probably won’t be good enough to garner Murray enough MVP consideration. They are given a win total of 7.5. The Cardinals are one of seven franchises to never have an NFL MVP.
Mahomes (+350) added a Super Bowl MVP to his resume last season in leading the Chiefs to a come-from-behind win in Super Bowl LIV over the San Francisco 49ers. Mahomes didn’t get a ton of regular-season MVP attention because he missed two-plus games with a knee injury. He’s going to be an annual MVP favourite because he’s that good. Mahomes also is surrounded with some incredible offensive talent.
Jackson took a huge leap forward in Year 2 in winning MVP honours – the first Ravens player to win the award. Jackson became third-youngest player to win MVP and only the second unanimous selection behind Tom Brady in 2010. Jackson not only led the NFL with 36 TD passes last year but set a single-season rushing record for a quarterback with 1,206 yards. The last repeat MVP winner was Peyton Manning in 2008-09. Hard to see Jackson winning again only as there’s almost no way he can be as statistically good again.
Seattle’s Russell Wilson and Brady, now with the Tampa Bay Bucs, round out the favourites at +650 and +900, respectively. Wilson was in the running for a large chunk of last season but then struggled a bit from mid-November through early December and fell out of the MVP chase. Wilson has still never received a single MVP vote in his career, which seems impossible.
Brady is a three-time winner (tied for second-most behind Manning’s five) and has the best offensive talent around him since 2007 (when he also won with the Patriots) but is 43 years old.
Since 2007, the only non-quarterback to win MVP was then-Vikings running back Adrian Peterson in 2012. The non-QB with the shortest odds this year is the Giants running back Saquon Barkley at +3000. Excellent player, but the Giants aren’t going to be very good again. Reigning NFL rushing king Derrick Henry is +3500.
The receiver with the shortest odds is Arizona’s Hopkins at +8000. No receiver has won the award. The defensive players with the shortest odds are the Rams’ Aaron Donald and 49ers’ Nick Bosa at +10000 each. No defender has won MVP since Giants legendary linebacker Lawrence Taylor in 1986.
NFL MVP Pick
Green Bay’s Aaron Rodgers to win his third at a good price of +2200. Rodgers is going to play with a HUGE chip on his shoulder this year after the Packers had the audacity to pick quarterback Jordan Love in the first round of April’s draft.