Is Patrick Mahomes the New MVP Favorite?

Russell Wilson’s lead is getting smaller by the week

For the majority of the first half of the NFL season, Russell Wilson has been considered the MVP favorite. This is for good reason as well. Through eight games, Wilson has accumulated 2,541 yards (fourth in the NFL), and a league-high 28 passing touchdowns. The Seattle quarterback’s MVP tour has taken a step back in recent weeks however. Over the past three games, Wilson has five interceptions and two fumbles. This in part has led to Seattle losing two of their last three contests.

Wilson was particularly bad in the Seahawks’ game Sunday against the Bills. He finished the 44–34 defeat with two interceptions and two fumbles lost. Wilson’s final stat line may not appear that bad, as he accumulated 390 yards and two passing touchdowns. However, much of that work was done while Seattle was trailing. Wilson didn’t throw his first touchdown until the fourth quarter, when the Bills were already up 41–20.

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Russell Wilson’s MVP chances took a hit Sunday against the Bills. John Munson/The Associated Press

The struggles for Wilson come on the heels of a loss two weeks prior to Arizona. A game in which the Seahawks QB threw three interceptions. Wilson’s MVP chances are dwindling in part for two reasons. The first being his play has declined as of late. The second however, is due to the stellar play of former MVP Patrick Mahomes.

The reigning Super Bowl MVP has been outstanding this season, especially the past two weeks. While Russell Wilson has been trending down, Patrick Mahomes has been doing the opposite. Over his last two games, Mahomes has thrown for nearly 800 yards (788), nine touchdowns, and no interceptions. The Chiefs have also won both of those matchups, bringing their record to 8–1 on the season.

Yes Mahomes has shined over his last two games; but he has also been special for the entire season. In nine games this year, the former MVP has 2,687 yards (second in the league), 25 passing touchdowns (also second in the NFL), and just one interception.

People are starting to realize it may be Mahomes, not Wilson, who will take home this year’s MVP award. The race is starting to heat up. So who should be the frontrunner? Well let’s compare the stats.

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Mahomes has been on fire of late, tossing nine touchdowns in two games. Denny Medley/USA TODAY Sports

Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs currently hold an 8–1 record, good for second in the NFL. Meanwhile, Russell Wilson has the Seahawks sitting at 6–2, and in first place in the NFC. It’s difficult to compare the two exactly considering the difference in games played (nine for Mahomes, eight for Wilson). We can still make it work however. While Mahomes has more total yards, Wilson is averaging more yards per game (second-most compared to fifth-most). Wilson has also thrown three more touchdowns, which is impressive considering he’s played one less game. The downside is Wilson has the fourth-most interceptions thrown (8), while Mahomes has the fewest of any starter (1). This hinders the Seattle QB’s case for MVP considering he has far more turnovers despite having less pass attempts and less games played. Finally, Mahomes has a higher QBR this season than Wilson (second in the league compared to fourth).

There’s an argument for either side. This race is currently too close to call. However, if the trends continue like they have, Patrick Mahomes will be raising his second MVP award at the end of the season.

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University at Buffalo ’20 | BA in Communication | Writer for The Sports Scientist

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