The NFL season is in full blast and the league has completed 8 weeks. There is another half-season to be played and anything can still happen. However, after 8 weeks of action, we’ve already seen enough performances to come up with our early NFL MVP favorites.

The NFL MVP award is given to the player who is considered the most valuable during the regular season. Several bodies hand out NFL MVP awards but the Associated Press MVP award is considered the de facto official MVP award. It is handed out during the annual NFL Honors Ceremony and voted upon by a panel of 50 sportswriters at the end of the regular season and before the playoffs. The results are announced on the day before the Super Bowl.

The reigning NFL MVP is Patrick Mahomes of the Kansas City Chiefs. Mahomes became the first player from the Kansas City franchise to be bestowed with such honors. This year, Mahomes opened as the betting favorite to win the award for the second straight season but a knee injury and his team’s struggles have seen him slide down the leader board, for now.

Here are the early betting odds to win the 2020 NFL MVP. These odds were taken from

Player Odds
Aaron Rodgers +300
Russell Wilson +300
DeShaun Watson +600
Christian McCaffrey +800
Patrick Mahomes +800
Lamar Jackson +900
Tom Brady +1200
Kirk Cousins +1600
Dak Prescott +3300
Jacoby Brissett +3300

Football Who Are the Favorites?

Aaron Rodgers rose to the top of the odds board following an MVP type performance in week 7 against the Oakland Raiders. Rodgers threw for five touchdowns and a total of 429 passing yards as the Packers beat the Raiders 42-24. The 35-year old former 24th pick of the 2005 NFL Draft has thrown 13 touchdowns and only 2 interceptions with a total of 2,019 passing yards through Week 7. The seven-time Pro Bowl selection won Super Bowl XLV and was the Super Bowl MVP that season. He is a two-time NFL MVP, winning the award in 2011 and 2014. He is considered one of the best quarterbacks ever and is the NFL’s All-Time leader in career passer rating.

Russell Wilson vaulted to the top of the odds board in Week 6, overtaking Patrick Mahomes after leading the Seattle Seahawks to a 5-1 record after six games. However, Wilson had his first bad game of the season in week 7 as Seattle lost to Baltimore 16-30. The 30-year old former University of Wisconsin standout finished below 50% in passing completion against the Ravens, completing only 20 out of 41 passes for 241 yards with one touchdown while throwing his first interception of the season. Wilson has passed for 1,945 yards with 15 touchdowns and just one pick this season.

DeShaun Watson has led the Houston Texans to a 5-3 record after week 8. The former 12th overall pick of the 2017 NFL Draft has found ways to win despite his team dealing with several key injuries. Watson has thrown for 1,952 passing yards this season with 13 touchdowns and five interceptions. He fell to third in the odds board after the Texans lost last week with Watson throwing one touchdown and two interceptions. On Sunday, Watson threw three touchdowns without an interception as the Texans beat the Raiders 27-24 in week 8.

Christian McCaffrey is the only non-quarterback on top of the current odds board. The 8th round pick of the 2017 NFL Draft has rushed for a total of 618 yards on 127 carries and has scored a total of seven touchdowns without a fumble this season. On the receiving end, McCaffrey has caught 35 passes for 305 yards with two receiving touchdowns. The Panthers saw their four-game winning streak snapped by the San Francisco 49ers in Week 8 but McCaffrey added another electrifying performance with 117 rushing yards with one touchdown.

Patrick Mahomes had been the frontrunner of the 2020 NFL MVP race during the first five weeks of the season. Mahomes was a +250 in Week 5 but the 24-year old reigning NFL MVP led the Packers to a 4-0 start before losing two straight games to the Indianapolis Colts and Houston Texans. Mahomes threw a total of 10 touchdowns without an interception in the Chiefs’ first three games of the season. However, he’s thrown just five in their last four games played with one or no touchdown in three of their last four games played. Mahomes is currently inactive with a knee injury although the Chiefs are optimistic that he will be back in Week 10.

Football Who Wins?

Aaron Rodgers and Russell Wilson have led their teams to impressive starts this season. The Green Bay Packers are 6-1 SU on the season and Rodgers is currently 5th in passing yards with a total of 2,019 on the season, 5th in touchdowns with 13 and 9th in adjusted quarterback rating at 59.9. Meanwhile, the Seahawks are 6-2 SU on the season and Wilson is second in adjusted quarterback rating at 77.5, tied with Patrick Mahomes and Matt Ryan for most TD passes thrown at 15 this season. Wilson also has thrown only one interception this season, tied with Mahomes for the fewest among the current betting favorites in the BetOnline odds board.

If you look at the last two decades of NFL statistics, these are some NFL betting trends to note:

  • The last six NFL MVPs have been quarterbacks.
  • Only three non-QBs have won the award since 2001 and all were running backs.
  • Only one NFL MVP winners since 2001 came from a team with fewer than 11 wins during that particular season and that was Adrian Peterson whose Vikings won only 10 games in 2012.

Mahomes was off to a fast start but the injury bug has caught up with him. He will be back this season but I think that in the games that he will miss, the other MVP favorites are going to make their moves and mark in the competition. The New England Patriots and San Francisco 49ers are still undefeated after week 8. Tom Brady and Jimmy G are floating in the Top 10 in the statistical rankings and if either or both come up with a string of huge games, which they are very capable of doing, then they might just zoom up in the odds board.

The solid pick, if you want to bet right now, would be Rodgers or Watson who is probably playing the best football among their peers. However, it’s still a long season and anything could happen. Brady of Jimmy G would make good dark horse picks right now, given their betting value. Meanwhile, I’m not a fan of Patrick Mahomes winning back to back MVPs right now because if he returns, he will be coming off an injury.

I’d want to save my pick after week 10 or 11 but if you stick a gun to my head right now, I would go with DeShaun Watson. Watson was impressive in his duel with Mahomes and led the Texans to a comeback win against the Chiefs. In week 8, he orchestrated another comeback win against the Raiders and I think that not only has he been putting up numbers but also playing well under pressure. My only concern is if the Texans can win enough games to get to at least 11 victories.

Keep an eye on Tom Brady as well because while he has thrown an interception in three out of the Patriots’ last four games, he is playing solid football right now and his team is off to a fast start. The one thing I like about New England’s streak is that it has been fueled by their defense and I think they will win 11 games easily.

Prediction: DeShaun Watson for now and Tom Brady as my darkhorse pick

Place Your Bet Here!

Related Articles
Leave Your Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *