Will there be any degree of suspense when the winner of the 2020 NFL MVP award is announced on Saturday night?
On Saturday evening, the National Football League and the Pro Football Hall of Fame will have a few major announcements to make. “NFL Honors” will reveal all of this year’s award winners this year as well as the 2021 Pro Football Hall of Fame class.
Now keep in mind that the voting for the league awards, a panel of 50 voters via the Associated Press, was done shortly after the regular season ended. Only a select number truly know the results. But it’s worth speculating that for the first time since 2003 we could have a tie when it comes to naming the NFL’s Most Valuable Player.
Throughout its inception and especially in recent years, this honor been dominated by quarterbacks. The last seven league’s MVPs have all come via the position.
On the other hand, the last non-QB to take home the gold was then-Minnesota Vikings’ running back Adrian Peterson in 2012. That year, he ran for the second-most yards in a season (2,097) in NFL annals. This year, we had more than a few exceptional performances. To narrow it down to a pair, Green Bay Packers’ quarterback Aaron Rodgers comes off a year in which he completed 70.7 percent of his passes for 4,299 yards, 48 touchdowns, and a mere 5 interceptions. Tennessee Titans’ workforce Derrick Henry amassed 2,027 yards on the ground on 378 carries and ran for 17 touchdowns.
Imagine Matt LaFleur’s team without the skills of Rodgers, who helped guide the team to the number-one seed in the NFC playoffs? And try to think about the Titans, who won their first division title this year since 2008, minus the services of Henry?
As for co-MVPs, we last saw it in 2003 when a pair of quarterbacks, Indianapolis’ Peyton Manning and Tennessee’s Steve McNair, shared the award. There was also 1997 when Green Bay fast-balled Brett Favre and fellow Hall of Famer Barry Sanders of the Detroit Lions both earned the honor.
Could it happen again on Saturday night? Given the history of the award, the odds are in favor of Rodgers – who would take home the honor for the third time in his career. But it’s also hard to ignore what Henry has done for Mike Vrabel’s squad. The envelope, please?