Last year, sophomore sensation Patrick Mahomes took the league by storm on his way to a fifty touchdown season and winning Most Valuable Player of 2018. Here are four quarterbacks that I believe could win the prestigious award this year.
1- Patrick Mahomes, Kansas City Chiefs
There have been several changes to the Chiefs roster this year, and it is hard not to argue that Mahomes has lost some weapons on the offensive side of the ball. Most notably WR Tyreek Hill, whose situation is still unclear for 2019. However, the Chiefs seem to be moving forward by drafting WR Mecole Hardman, from the University of Georgia, in the second round of the NFL draft. Most draft analysts had Hardman’s player comp as a younger, slightly less talented version of Hill. He ran a scorching 4.33-second 40-yard dash at the combine. Hardman will get plenty of opportunity in this offense with a QB that threw for over five thousand yards in 2018. If Hardman can step up and replace Hill, I think that Mahomes will be in a prominent position to win MVP again in 2019. He would be the first quarterback to win back to back MVP awards since Peyton Manning in the 2008 and 2009 seasons.
Mahomes is the favorite at most sportsbooks at +400.
2- Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay Packers
Aaron Rodgers had a rough 2018 season and seemed to be far removed from his MVP winning seasons back in 2011 and 2014. The changes the Packers have made this offseason bode well for the talented quarterback. They have brought in offensive-minded head coach Matt LaFleur and addressed holes on the defensive side of the ball in the draft. I believe that Green Bays defense is one of the most improved units in the NFL. With a strong pass rush, the Green Bay offense will be on the field much more than last year. A better defense will give Rodgers more opportunities to strengthen a 2019 MVP run. If sophomore WRs St-Brown and Valdes-Scantling can improve, this could be the third MVP for Rodgers in the past ten years.
Rodgers odds are +800, and he is my choice to win it this year.
3- Drew Brees, New Orleans Saints
Drew Brees is now forty years old and in his nineteenth NFL season. Age was not a factor last year; Brees was in MVP contention alongside Mahomes and fellow seasoned QB Tom Brady. Surprisingly enough, Brees has never won the award in his storied career with New Orleans. That could change this year with most of 2018 pieces coming back for another run at a Superbowl. The Saints will have a chip on their shoulder after the devastating loss they suffered against the LA Rams in the NFC conference finals. The Superbowl was one win away, and with the poor offensive performances of both Superbowl teams, it is hard not to think the Saints could have had a very good shot at winning it all. I see a world where Sean Payton and Drew Brees come out with a vengeance and scorch the league. If that is the case, there is a strong chance that Brees wins his first MVP award.
Vegas odds for Brees to win MVP are currently +700 and worth a small bet.
4- Andrew Luck, Indianapolis Colts
Andrew Luck finally looked like he had returned to MVP caliber form last season. With his shoulder injury finally behind him, he returned to being the physical specimen that we had all expected. If things continue to progress at the rate they did last year, Luck might finally be in the position to win Most Valuable Player. The Colts are my longshot team to win the Superbowl, and that is completely reliant on Luck playing as well, if not better than he did last year. The weapons are now in place, with WR Hilton on one side and newly acquired Devin Funchess on the other. Luck finally has options that can scare an NFL caliber defense. His offensive line is a wall (probably second best behind the Cowboys), and he will have all the time he needs to capitalize on his newfound weapons.
Vegas Odds for Luck to win MVP are +800, sprinkle a little on that and Colts to win the Superbowl at +1600.
Tom Brady, New England Patriots (+1000): He’s so old, but time doesn’t seem to impact him the same way it does us, regular humans. I keep thinking the Patriots will finally fall off, never seems to happen!
Russel Wilson, Seattle Seahawks (+1600): Wilson just received the big contract, maybe his play will follow. I find it hard to see him winning MVP simply because Seattle has gravitated towards a more run-happy offense. I don’t think he will have enough opportunity.
Baker Mayfield, Cleveland Browns (+1400): If the Browns are as good as everyone seems to think they will be, then Mayfield has a legit chance. With an offense full of weapons, if he gets better in his sophomore year, it could mean big things for the polarizing QB.