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NFL MVP Race – Tom Brady Proving Age Is Just a Number

Remember that old saying that said football players are supposed to decline once they reach a certain age? Entering his 18th year in the league at age 40, Tom Brady is rewriting the history books and what was thought to be achievable.

It’d be one thing to remain and good shape, continue playing good football, and perhaps be your team’s best option to go out and win you football games.

It’s an entirely different kind of animal when at age 40, and more than halfway through the season, you are the betting favorite for the NFL MVP. Brady is doing it by simply doing what he has always done: being the most reliable and consistent quarterback in the NFL.

Carson Wentz, on the other hand, is playing at an elite level in just his second season at age 24. Wenz may not have the pedigree that Brady has, but make no mistake about it. #11 in Philadelphia is very much in the thick of the NFL MVP Race.

I wrote this post to talk about just how incredible Tom Brady has been this year. Touts like ESPN’s Max Kellerman promised us he would fall off a cliff more than a year ago. By the end of this article, you will find out just how far from the truth that egregious statement was.

I am going to tell you all about what Wentz is doing in Philly, and why he is deserving of being considered for the league’s Most Valuable Player.

All you hungry sports bettors out there, this isn’t just a blog about statistics. In a section below, I will talk about what kind of odds you can find for Brady and Wentz. How have those odds changed in just 11 weeks since the beginning of the season? Relax, I will get there.

With 8 games remaining, someone will have to do something pretty special to overtake these two quarterbacks. Expect the race to come down to Brady and Wentz. Read along to find out who has the leg up.

Let’s start with the guy who is -160 to win the MVP on most online betting sites after thrashing the Raiders in week 11.

Tom Brady

50 touchdowns and 4 interceptions since the start of 2016. Let that sink in. As good as Tom Brady has been over his career, he has elevated his game to a new level. Take a look at what this dude has done since the start of last season.

First 16 Seasons Last 2 Seasons
Completion 63.6% 68.0%
Yards/Pass 7.5 8.3
TD/INT Ratio 2.9 12.5
Passer Rating 96.4 111.6

Tom Brady isn’t the leading contender for the NFL MVP Award just based on his career and last year’s numbers. The New England quarterback is playing better football than any QB in the league today. His numbers this season back the claim up. Through 10 games, his 3,146 yards don’t just lead the NFL. It’s 345 more yards than anyone else. It gets better.

His 110.9 quarterback rating leads the league as well. Want to talk about efficiency? How about an AFC-leading 22 touchdown passes and an NFL-low 2 interceptions? Combine his gaudy numbers with the fact that his team is 8-2 and leading their division, I’d say Brady is in a prime position to capture the award for the third time.

If you watched his most recent game against the Raiders in Mexico City, you can understand why he is putting up the beefy numbers he is. 30-37 with 339 yards and 3 TDs would be an amazing day for most quarterbacks.

For Tom, it’s just another day in the office.

Offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels has Brady and the offensive unit clicking on all cylinders. Brady commands the 10 men around him like a seasoned orchestrator is conducting a symphony.

It actually is quite beautiful to watch. Brady is putting on a “quarterback clinic” week after week. All young quarterbacks and football players at home should pay attention to the way Brady approaches a game and take a page out of his book. Skill and talent may get you through high school, perhaps even college football.

The only way to excel at a level that Tom is this year is to be painstakingly deliberate in your routine and preparation. Jack Nicklaus used to say he played better than any other golfers at Majors because he prepared better than any other golfers.

Tom Brady leaves no stones unturned when it comes to studying and preparing for an opposing defense.

Tom’s leadership and ability to make his teammates around him better is what truly defines Tom as the player he is. It doesn’t matter who is playing on New England’s offense. He could be a first-round draft pick or a free-agent off the streets in his first week in uniform.

Once you suit up in a Patriots uniform and play in a Tom Brady-led offense, things change. Bringing out the best in your teammates is a quality that not every football player is born with or has. Nobody in the entire league does a better job of this than Brady.

When young guys come in and see the work ethic and dedication that Tom puts in, it’s contagious. He is a 40-year old man with absolutely nothing to prove yet he shows up to practice each and every day like he has to go out and earn the starting job.

His relentless will to improve and be the best player for his team is why Brady will go down as the greatest quarterback to ever play in the NFL. Will that claim come with the 2017 NFL MVP Award?

Let’s find out a little more about that kid doing big things in Philadelphia:

Carson Wentz

Carson WentzNobody expected the Eagles to be 9-1 at this point in the season. Anybody who tells you they predicted Carson Wentz would be leading the league with 25 touchdown passes is lying to you. If a friend told you he or she thought that heading into Thanksgiving he would be +170 to win the NFL MVP Award (the second-best odds behind the legend of Brady himself), get your friend checked out. That person isn’t being honest.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I liked what I saw from the rookie out of North Dakota State University last year. I expected him to make strides in his sophomore campaign. I just didn’t expect that just 10 games into the season NFL scouts and analysts would be calling him the next superstar in the league.

If you know anything from reading my prior blogs, I tend to lean towards where the facts and data point me, not the opinions of other people. In this case, the evidence supports the claim.

Let’s take a closer look at where Carson Ranks in the most important passing categories:

  • 25 Touchdown Passes: leads the NFL
  • 5:1 TD/INT Ratio: second in NFL (behind Brady)
  • 103.4 QB Rating: fourth in the NFL

The bottom line is it doesn’t matter if this guy is in his second year in the league or an 11-year veteran. It doesn’t matter if he played his college ball in the Missouri Valley Conference or the SEC.

What matters is that Carson Wentz is playing like an absolute stud and is a star-in-the-making.

The way he carries himself proves he is much wiser than his NFL experience may lead you to believe. Don’t be fooled by the fact that he doesn’t come from the typical background that a star quarterback comes from.

Remember, Tom Brady wasn’t drafted until the 6th round in the 2000 NFL Draft. Measuring the “it factor” and leadership qualities of a quarterback isn’t something that can be done in the film room. Those qualities are gained and earned by your play on the field. Coaches and players respect you based on the effort you put in. Clearly, Carson is taking this quarterback job in Philly pretty seriously. He arrives at the training facility at 5:30 a.m. each morning to start preparing. That’s the sign of a guy that wants to put every ounce of himself into his craft for his teammates.

There is no doubt that Carson Wentz is having an unbelievable season. He is well on his way, in fact, he is already considered one of the premier quarterbacks in the National Football League.

But back to the question of this blog- is he doing enough to warrant an NFL MVP Award?

Who Will Win the Award?

I am assuming most of you ladies and gentlemen like to bet online. Seasoned bettors like the ones reading this blog should already be well aware of the NFL betting options the best online sports betting sites offer on a year-round basis.

If not let me quickly fill you in. Online sportsbooks love action. The best way to entice action from prospective bettors is to give them choices, give them options. Instead of just betting on who will win or how many points will be scored, a plethora of additional bets are offered.

For example, the NFL MVP Award.

So, now that you know this bet is available in just a couple of clicks, let’s talk about this year’s race. I want to illustrate to you just how drastically different these odds look after week 11, compared to during the pre-season.

NFL MVP Award (8/2/17) NFL MVP Award (11/22/17)
Tom Brady +550 -160
Carson Wentz +3300 +170

As you can see, this two-horse race as of now wasn’t planned from the beginning. Wentz’s play has surprised many as indicated by his dramatic jump up the board. There were actually at least 14 other NFL players that started the season with better odds to win the NFL MVP than did Wentz. If you were one of the lucky few who placed a wager on Wentz before the season, hang on tight to that ticket. It may end up paying off after all.

Who wins the award is going to come down to how the Patriots and Eagles finish up the season. Here’s what I know:

Tom Brady is going to put up massive numbers and probably lead the NFL in most major quarterbacking stats. The Patriots are going to win their division and be the odds-on favorite to win the Super Bowl. Typically, I’d just hand the award over to Tom right now so Giselle can place it on a mantle at home. The problem is, Carson Wentz has something to say about it. At least his play on the field does.

If the Eagles (as I fully expect them to) are able to keep up the pace and finish the season with the best record and home-field in the NFC, Wentz is going to be right there in the discussion with Brady when push comes to shove.

In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if the voters actually lean towards Wentz, given how incredible and unexpected this run has been. To be fair, what Brady brings to the table in New England, in terms of how they operate their system, is unparalleled to anyone or anything in the league.

If they handed Brady the MVP Award each of the last 15 seasons it could be justified. What he brings to the table can’t be measured by statistics.

The Takeaway

Tom Brady and Carson Wentz are the two leading contenders for this season’s NFL MVP Award. Brady- I mean, just come on. At age 40, TB12 is dismantling defenses and coverage schemes like he is playing in slow-motion. His NFL-leading 110.9 passer rating and 3,146 yards thrown resemble numbers of playing Madden on XBOX on rookie mode.

Carson Wentz is doing things a bit differently. Not only is he leading the entire league with 25 touchdown passes, he is also sixth in the league in rushing yards among quarterbacks. Wentz does it with his arm, he does it with his legs, and most importantly- he does it with his work ethic.

If you notice the common trend between the two candidates- it’s the persistent work ethic. It’s the drive and passion to be the best player and teammate you can be.

Regardless of who wins the award, both are in the midst of having extraordinary seasons. If the Eagles continue to dominate their competition and Wentz just keeps grinding like he is- don’t be flabbergasted if NFL commissioner Roger Goodell calls Carson up to the podium.

If Wentz or the Eagles slip up at all, it will be that 40-year old ageless wonder in New England that sees the award fall into his lap.

In either case, the time to place your wagers on this prop bet was long ago. Because they are such heavy favorites, the value just simply isn’t there.

If I were to throw one more dark horse name out there, watch out for Antonio Brown. #84 in Pittsburgh is quietly putting up huge numbers, leading the league with 70 receptions and 1,026 yards. If Pittsburgh continues to win games and has a bye in the playoffs, I think Brown’s name could enter the fold. He can put up numbers in bunches as we have seen before.

If you are craving to get a bet in, opt for someone like Brown who you can get at a tremendous price. I still see Brady or Wentz winning the award, giving the slight edge to Brady. I absolutely love and can appreciate what Carson is doing and has done for the Philadelphia franchise. It’s just hard to argue with a guy who is dominating the league the way Tom has been.

Look for this race to go down to the wire. After all, this is the National Football League. Anything can happen.

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