2012 NFL MVP Odds and Predictions – Top 5 Favorites to Win the 2012 AP NFL MVP Award: With the regular season coming to a close, it is time to take a final look at the MVP candidates. Stats, team performance and other circumstances all play a role, but the top contenders have certainly set themselves apart from the pack at this point in the year. The only question is which player is the best of the bunch.
2012 NFL MVP Favorites and Contenders
- Aaron Rodgers, Quarterback, Green Bay Packers
Even though the Packers finally lost a game, Aaron Rodgers is still the obvious choice for MVP honors. He leads the NFL with 45 touchdown passes and ranks third with more than 4,600 passing yards. Rodgers is completing more than 68 percent of the passes, he has just six interceptions, and his 122.5 quarterback rating is by far the best on football. More importantly, he has amassed his numbers for the defending Super Bowl champs. Rodgers and company have had to face the best shot from every team they have faced, and not only did the Packers avoid the championship hangover, they have been the best team in the league. Rodgers is having a career year, and he is more than worthy of winning the MVP award.
- Drew Brees, Quarterback, New Orleans Saints
If not for Rodgers, Drew Brees would be an easy choice for the MVP award. He has 41 touchdown passes this year and has already broken Dan Marino’s single-season record for passing yards. In addition to passing yards, Brees also leads the NFL with a 70.7 completion percentage. Separating Brees and Rodgers isn’t easy, but the Packers did defeat the Saints early in the year, and Brees’ 13 interceptions are more twice as many as Rodgers has. Brees has also been mediocre at games played outdoors, while piling up numbers inside the Superdome and other indoor stadiums. The criticisms are minor, but they are enough to keep Brees below Rodgers on the MVP totem pole.
- Tom Brady, Quarterback, New England Patriots
A strong argument could be made that Tom Brady deserves to win his second consecutive MVP award. He has 36 touchdowns compared to just 11 interceptions, and he will likely join Brees in breaking Marino’s record for passing yards in a season. More importantly, Brady has led an undermanned New England team to the best record in the AFC. The Patriots don’t have a deep threat at receiver, and they can’t really run the ball. The New England defense has been gashed on a regular basis as well, but Brady has been able to bail his team out of trouble again and again. Brady has the five foot nothing Wes Welker leading the NFL in receiving yards and has helped Rob Gronkowski set a record for touchdown catches by a tight end in a season. He won’t be able to overtake Rodgers, but nobody has done more with less than Brady.
- Eli Manning, Quarterback, New York Giants
The New York Giants can’t run the football, they can’t stop other teams from scoring, and their receivers drop big passes on a regular basis. Despite all the problems, New York still has a shot at winning the NFC East thanks in large part to the play of Eli Manning. He has thrown for more than 4,500 yards and has 26 touchdown passes this season, carrying an otherwise injury-depleted, mistake-prone Giants club. Manning has taken a lot of criticism over the years for appearing disinterested and lacking leadership skills. He still isn’t the type of guy to pump of his teammates, but he has made them all better with his play this season. Whether or not the Giants ultimately make the playoffs doesn’t change the fact that Manning is the main reason New York is even relevant.
- Maurice Jones-Drew, Running Back, Jacksonville Jaguars
The Jacksonville Jaguars are a bad football team. They have a 4-11 record, they score less than 15 points a game, and they throw for an NFL-worst 140.5 yards per game. Despite the ugly numbers, Maurice Jones-Drew has somehow managed to put together an impressive season. He leads the NFL with more than 1,400 rushing yards and has added almost 400 receiving yards. Perhaps more impressively, Jones-Drew is averaging more than 4.5 yards per carry despite being the lone weapon for a one-dimensional offense. Jones-Drew isn’t going to sniff MVP honors while playing for a team that isn’t in contention, but his performance this year has been admirable. Take him out of the mix, and the Jaguars may be preparing to draft Andrew Luck in a few months.
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