Should Jackson Be The New MVP Favorite After Big Win Over Texans?
Why Is Jackson Becoming The NFL MVP Favorite?
A Sunday afternoon NFL contest was portrayed as a sort of rematch of a thrilling 2016 game between Louisville and Clemson for Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson and Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson. While Watson’s Clemson team won the previous matchup by six, Jackson won the rematch in a 41-7 blowout.
Houston Looked Tougher, Blowout Instead
Coming into Sunday’s game, Houston was 6-3 and appeared to be one of the tougher games on Baltimore’s schedule. Yet the Ravens cruised to victory on the back of Jackson’s 222 passing yards and four touchdowns. The MVP candidate also added 86 yards rushing.
Jackson has now led his team to six wins in a row while defeating the likes of Russell Wilson, Tom Brady, and Watson.
Has Jackson already done enough to lock up the 2019 MVP Award? Let’s take a look at the other MVP candidates and the sportsbook odds.
Current NFL MVP Candidates
As you’d expect, quarterbacks dominate the list of MVP favorites. You’d have to pass six QBs before reaching the first non-quarterback, Christian McCaffrey.
According to the sportsbook odds, Jackson is now the favorite to win the MVP award with odds of +140. However, it’s a relatively close race, with Wilson right on his heels with +200.
The trio trail behind, but with a significant gap:
- Aaron Rodgers (+900)
- Patrick Mahomes (+1000)
- Dak Prescott (+1000)
Of those candidates, Jackson, Rodgers, and Wilson share the lead in terms of team record (8-2). Mahomes’ Chiefs are 7-4, and Prescott’s Cowboys are 6-4.
How Does Each Player Perform?
Let’s break down how each candidate is personally performing:
Russell Wilson – Wilson has been great once again this year, and he has the second-best QBR (78.2) to show for it. Wilson has also thrown for the most touchdowns (23) while tossing just two interceptions, and he finds himself fourth on the list of passing yardage (2,737).
Aaron Rodgers – Rodgers may have the Pack poised for a playoff run, but he hasn’t been the most prolific passer throughout the year. Rodgers can boast a record of 17 touchdowns (11th) and just two interceptions but is ninth in yards (2,718) and 14th in completion percentage (.648).
Patrick Mahomes – Mahomes missed time with a dislocated kneecap, but he’s still managed to throw for the fourth-most yards (2,808) and is tied for the fourth-most touchdowns (19), all while giving up just two interceptions.
Dak Prescott – Prescott has put up MVP stats in a contract year, starting with his league-leading 3,221 yards. Prescott can also boast the NFL’s second-best QBR (77.8), and he’s tied for second with 21 touchdowns. The biggest downfall of the Cowboys QB is his nine interceptions.
Why Jackson Should NOT Be Leading the MVP Race
After looking at the numbers of all the other top MVP candidates, it’s easy to form the opinion that Jackson’s flashy playing style is why he’s the MVP frontrunner.
Sure, Jackson has easily rushed for the most yards of any quarterback (788) and has scored six touchdowns on the ground, but he’s only in the top five of two major passing categories. Outside of his 19 passing touchdowns (T-4th) and QBR of 77.8 (T-2nd), Jackson is:
- 19th in passing yards (2,258)
- 11th in completion percentage (.663)
- Has thrown five picks
Through 10 games, Jackson has thrown for 300 yards just once and has thrown for fewer than 200 yards on three separate occasions. A quarterback like Prescott has yet to throw for fewer than 223 yards and has surpassed the 400-yard mark three times.
Although Jackson currently leads the MVP race, it’s only his legs that are outperforming the other top quarterbacks around the NFL.