Patrick Mahomes and Aaron Rodgers are the two top choices for league MVP right now.
This has been a crazy year of football, with dozens of unknowns entering the season and constant changes throughout. One thing is for certain though: Patrick Mahomes and Aaron Rodgers are playing some of the best football in the league and are the clear top two choices for NFL Most Valuable Player.
While the MVP is said to not be directly about statistics, it has definitely swayed towards a more stat-driven award. Looking at these stats, we can see:
- Through 12 games this season, Mahomes has thrown for 3,815 yards and 31 passing touchdowns with 2 interceptions, while completing 68% of his passes.
- Through Rodgers’ 12 games this season, he has thrown for 3,395 yards and 36 passing touchdowns with 4 interceptions, while completing around 69% of his passes.
These are extremely comparable numbers, as Mahomes has roughly a 400 yard edge in passing yards, but Rodgers has 5 more passing touchdowns. Since these numbers are so close, we can also break down individual performances throughout the season.
In eight of the 12 games played this season by the Chiefs, Mahomes has thrown for over 300 yards. While he did have four games where he threw for under 300 yards, it is important to look at the outcomes of those games:
- In week one against the Texans, Mahomes threw for 211 yards, but it ended in a Chiefs win.
- In week four against the Patriots, Mahomes threw for 236 yards, but it ended in a Chiefs win.
- In week six against the Bills, Mahomes threw for 225 yards, but it ended in a Chiefs win.
- Finally, in week seven against the Broncos, Mahomes threw for only 200 yards, but it still ended in a Chiefs win (blowout, I might add)
While he may not have had the most explosive passing games throughout those four weeks, they all ended up in wins.
Now looking at Rodgers, he has only thrown for over 300 yards in five of the 12 games that the Packers have played so far this season.
With Aaron Rodgers throwing for under 300 yards this season, the Packers have wins against the Detroit Lions, the New Orleans Saints, the Chicago Bears, the Houston Texans, and the Philadelphia Eagles. The other two games where Rodgers threw for under 300 yards ended up in losses against the Buccaneers (where he only threw for 160 yards) and the Vikings.
These statistics can mean two completely different things:
- Aaron Rodgers is more valuable than Patrick Mahomes, because his team has less success when he isn’t having amazing passing games.
- Patrick Mahomes is more valuable, as he is able to rally his team behind him even when he may not be driving them down the field with his passing.
At this point in the season, as a spectator that watches the Chiefs every week, I would have to give the edge in this race to Mahomes. This season is not over yet, but if he continues down his current path then he should undoubtedly be named league MVP.
Every single week, Mahomes makes plays that I have never seen before. I also see some plays that I just cannot imagine any other quarterback in the entire league doing right now.
Mahomes is a special talent and I don’t think that all of his success is predicated on his surroundings. Yes, he may have slightly more talent around him than Rodgers, but Mahomes shows that he is flexible in his game and does what his team needs him to do to win—of which the Chiefs have two more than the Packers.
Awards do not matter to this team, as we see from their “run it back” campaign. Their ultimate goal is winning another Super Bowl. However, I do believe that Mahomes will be walking away from this season as the NFL’s Most Valuable Player, and I suspect that he will continue to be in the conversation for years to come.