Sport Court: Who will win NFL MVP?

Frank Passalacqua and Brandon Gubitosa

Frank P:

The NFL MVP is always a heated topic. Throughout the first half of the season, there are a few standouts that will most likely be in the final running.

First off is DeMarco Murray, the running back for the Dallas Cowboys.

Through the first seven games of the year, Murray leads the lead in every aspect of the running game. Murray has 913 rushing yards (which is 298 more than Arian Foster at no. 2), seven touchdowns, 48 first downs, and is averaging 140.4 yards per game.

Murray has been putting on a season for the history books. He is the only rusher in NFL history to rush for 100+ yards in each of the season’s first seven games. Not only is that impressive, it is something that no one has every done before. To put that into perspective, last year’s rushing title went to LeSean McCoy who had seven 100+ rushing yard games total last year.

The story of his season is now being compared to the one record that has yet to be broken. In 1984, Eric Dickerson rushed for 2,105 yards. Murray is now on pace to reach 2,086 yards at his current pace.

Can he break the record?

I say no, but if he comes even close and eclipses a 2,000-yard season, I say he wins MVP hands down.

The issue here is his current workload and his injury-prone past. Murray has carried the ball 187 times, which is 61 more times than the second leading rusher. 187 carries in seven games is nuts, and it is only a matter of time before he wears down. Again, to put his current workload into perspective, the leading rusher a year ago ran the ball 314 times, and Murray is already about 70% there in just seven games.

I also mentioned he is injury prone. This is Murray’s biggest down fall, and will ultimately be the collapse of the Dallas Cowboys’ season. In his first three years in the league, Murray has not played a full 16-game season due to injuries cutting him short.

Will the injury curse plague him once again? We’ll have to see.

If Murray does go down and falls out of the MVP discussion, then I think Aaron Rodgers will be the next candidate.

Rodgers is leading the 5-2 Packers with phenomenal numbers. With 1,674 yards, Rodgers is throwing a stellar 66.8 completion percentage with a rating of 117.3, which is only second to Peyton Manning.

What I find most impressive is his touchdown to interception ratio. Rodgers has thrown 18 touchdowns (second in the NFL) to only one interception all year. 18:1 wins games, and Rodgers is proving that he has what it takes to be NFL MVP.

His numbers are oddly close to the pace he was at this point in 2011, where he finished the season with 45 touchdowns and only six interceptions. Oh yea, he won the MVP that year.

Quarterback is the most popular position to win the MVP award, with running backs accounting for second most.

As I mentioned earlier, if Murray can stay healthy and pass 2,000 yards on the season, I think he takes it. However, if I were a betting man, I’d say Murray goes down around week 10, pointing fingers to Aaron Rodgers claiming the award for the second time in his career.

 

Brandon G:

The NFL season is almost half way over and discussions of who deserves to be MVP have already heated up.

Names like J.J. Watt, Demarco Murray, Aaron Rodgers and Peyton Manning are popular names that come up in many talks. One name to keep an eye out for is Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck.

Coming into the eight week of the season the Colts are 5-2 with Luck under center. Luck leads the league in yards (2331), completions (199), yards per game (333) and is tied for the lead league in touchdowns with 19. These are elite numbers for a quarterback, especially one who is entering his third season in the NFL.

He is already on pace for over 5000 passing yards and should come close to breaking Peyton Manning’s NFL record of 5477 yards in a season which was broken in 2013 (a year where Manning was awarded MVP).

Luck has played a key role in the Colts division leading 5-2 record. According to ESPN, the Colts are ranked fourth overall in the NFL and have yet to score under 20 points in a game so far this season. The Colts should have no problem winning the division as they have a rather easy schedule to end the season.

If they were to take make a run toward the super bowl, it would be thanks to Luck who is responsible for making the Colts the best passing team in the game. Keep in mind, Luck is not working with all star wide receivers as quarterbacks such as Peyton Manning and Aaron Rodgers. His best receivers are T.Y. Hilton and Reggie Wayne. T.Y. Hilton like Andrew Luck is just entering his third season and was a third round draft pick.

He is an emerging speedy receiver who has the potential to be an all star quarterback, especially with Andrew Luck throwing him the ball. Reggie Wayne is entering his 14th season as an NFL wide receiver and has seen his better days as a receiver.

Although he is only 35 years old, his body has taken a beating over the years and his days are limited as a player in the league. If Luck keeps up his numbers he should have no problem throwing for over 5000 yards and 40 touchdowns this season.

With those numbers and a division title Luck should cruise toward winning his first MVP award and would tie Tom Brady as the youngest person to win a NFL MVP award at 25 years old.

He should be an exciting player to watch this season and for the rest of his career as he still has time till he hits his peak as a NFL player.