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And the 2018 NFL MVP is…

... and what about the other awards?

Drew Brees celebrates as he has a career year

Drew Brees celebrates as he has a career year

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As the 2018-19 NFL season begins to wrap up, and teams begin their playoff push or tanking for next season, a few questions arise. Who is the league MVP? How about Comeback Player of the Year? Who had the best rookie talent?

I will go over each award mentioned above, and go over who I believe should win.

MVP – Drew Brees (New Orleans Saints)

Last year, Carson Wentz was the clear favorite to win MVP until he tore his ACL versus the LA Rams. Tom Brady went onto win the award.

This season, Tom Brady is in the MVP hunt, but not in the Top 5. He seems to be lagging behind the rest of the candidates (as much as an elite QB of his caliber can be lagging behind, at least)

Unlike last year, there seems to be two clear front-runners in Patrick Mahomes and Drew Brees.

Here are the top 5 candidates in the MVP race.

Drew Brees, in my opinion, is more than deserving to be the MVP. He has consistently played at the top of his game and has played without a great supporting cast for a long time. He finally got the help he deserves.

Head Coach Andy Reid is creatively dismantling defenses with the Chiefs
(https://www.gettyimages.co.uk/photos/andy-reid)

The Saints are one of the scariest teams to play (Just ask L.A., Cincinnati, or Philly). Drew Brees is shredding through defenses every week without remorse. Just look at his stats: they’re off the charts!

In my opinion, there isn’t really any competition. Patrick Mahomes is having an elite season behind head coach Andy Reid, but he also has his blunders. Mahomes has 10 interceptions, which is five times as many as Brees with only two.

Gurley is by far the biggest game changer on the LA Rams offense, but running backs have a terribly hard time beating QB’s for NFL MVP.

Jared Goff is a great QB for LA too, but he isn’t keeping up in the race this year.

Andrew Luck is having a career year that is going somewhat unnoticed for Indy, but he has a different award on lock this year…

 

Who will win 2018 MVP?

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Comeback Player of the Year – Andrew Luck (Indianapolis Colts)

Last year, Keenan Allen won the comeback player of the year for the LA Chargers. This year there are two front runners for the award: Andrew Luck and Adrian Peterson.

Last year Adrian Peterson played ten games: four with the New Orleans Saints, and six with the Arizona Cardinals. In 2016, AP played his last year with Minnesota, but he only played three games.

This year AP is tearing it up for the Washington Redskins. He is covering for the injured rookie Derrius Guice, who tore his ACL before the season started. He has over 750 yards and six touchdowns.

On the other hand, Andrew Luck did not play at all last year. Despite that, Andrew Luck is playing like an elite QB. He is in the middle of a career year, and is in the MVP race.

Andrew is averaging over 280 yards per game, and has 32 touchdowns. He is on pace to have the best year in touchdowns, and its because of his new-and-improved offensive line.

Andrew Luck celebrates with his team (https://www.1070thefan.com/blogs/kevins-corner/colts-coverage/quiet-day-andrew-luck-colts-earn-team-win)

The Colts only have allowed 11 sacks so far this year, which is a massive improvement from 2016 (Luck’s last year) when Luck was sacked over 40 times.

Even without many weapons, only really having TY Hilton and Eric Ebron, Luck is preforming like a star. He has thrown for over 3,000 yards.

In my opinion, that is why Luck has without a doubt secured this award. He deserves it because, after having his career in jeopardy, Luck looks better than before his injury.

 

Who will win Comeback Player of the Year?

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Offensive Rookie of the Year – Baker Mayfield (Cleveland Browns)

Offensive Rookie of the Year is, like the MVP, is a difficult award to pin-point. First off, Baker Mayfield, the first round pick, had a decent start to the season. After the abomination known as Hue Jackson was fired, Baker vastly improved.

That was evident when Baker demolished Hue Jackson’s new team, the Cincinnati Bengals.

The Browns seem to have figured it out, and are finally winning games after years of ineptitude.

Baker would seem to be a clear favorite, but a few others are making their case too.

The fact that the next two up for rookie of the year are running backs shows the importance of the running game despite teams not paying their running backs like (I’m looking at you Pittsburgh).

Saquon Barkley, the second pick of the draft, is showing why he should be rookie of the year. While the Giants are not lighting up the win column, Barkley is shining: and it shows on the stat sheet.

Barkley is fourth in rushing yards this season, with over 950. He also has eight rushing touchdowns on 195 attempts. That gives him 4.9 yards per carry.

However, Barkley is a profound name in the passing attack, too. Saquon has 74 receptions for 602 yards and four touchdowns.

Saquon is clearly shown how he is a dual threat for the Giants offense, despite their troubles winning many games this year.

Surprisingly also in the race for offensive rookie of the year is Denver Broncos’ undrafted running back Phillip Lindsay. Looking back Phillip Lindsay was bafflingly undrafted, due to his amazing talent.

Lindsay is averaging 5.8 yards per carry, which is the highest among all rookies this year. As of Week 12, Phillip’s fastest run clocked in at 21 miles per hour, which is fifth among all ball carriers this year. He also does all of this while splitting carries with Royce Freeman.

Lindsay showed off his skills at Paul Brown Stadium, with over 150 yards and two touchdowns. That puts him at 780 yards and six touchdowns on 135 carries.

Lindsay has electrified the Denver offense, but honestly I do not believe he will win the award. It would take a miracle for that to happen.  

Who will win Offensive Rookie of the Year?

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Defensive Rookie of the Year – Bradley Chubb (Denver Broncos)

Bradley Chubb in my opinion has been the most efficient defensive player in the rookie class this year.

He is listed as an outside linebacker, but plays like a pro-bowl edge rusher. With nine sacks, Chubb joins Von Miller (with 11.5 sacks) to make a dangerous pass rush. Chubb also has a forced fumble in his rookie year.

Chubb was the fifth pick in the NFL Draft by the Denver Broncos, and he has played a big role in their great pass rush.

His competition includes Darius Leonard for the Indianapolis Colts. He is also listed as an outside linebacker, but plays a lot more in coverage.

Due to their different use on the field, Darius Leonard has over 50 more tackles and an interception. He also has three more forced fumbles.

Bradley Chubb has a three sack game versus the Rams (https://flipboard.com/topic/kansascitychiefs/green-bay%2C-wisc.—-the-49ers-have-already-been-bumped-from-one-of-their-schedul/a-f4_-SxGBSY6NXBl3sOf5Hg%3Aa%3A2521573733-154e0cd152/nbcsports.com)

However, I do not believe he has made quite the impact as Chubb on the field. Teams are forced to choose between blocking Von Miller or Bradley Chubb, but blocking both is nearly impossible. Only two teams have held both of them to no sacks, and both were losses.

When you factor in Tremaine Edmunds and Roquan Smith, rookie linebackers this year have been exceeding their potential.

A non-linebacker that is up for debate is Derwin James. Derwin is a safety for the LA Chargers, and is having a great start to his NFL career.

I give the award to Chubb because he compliments the Broncos defense very well, being a pass rushing linebacker. Chubb and Von Miller together are the best pass-rushing duo in football.

 

Who will win Defensive Rookie of the Year?

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Ryan Hill '20, Staff Writer

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And the 2018 NFL MVP is…