Could Stafford Become The Favorite For MVP This Season?
A stellar performance by Derek Carr and a win in Kansas City that would likely clinch the AFC West for the Raiders, would’ve made Carr all but a lock to win the NFL’s most valuable player. Yet the exact opposite happened, and the Raiders lost largely to the poor play of Carr and the offense altogether. The Raiders will still likely make the playoffs, but with the Chiefs holding a 2-0 record on the year against them they won’t be going to the dance as a division champion.
The poor play of Carr on a national stage in the biggest regular season game yet in 2016 will loom large in the minds of voters when they decide who the MVP should be. Matthew Stafford has been in the conversation all year for MVP, but never the leader. With a quarter of the season to go, a strong finish for Stafford would give him a very good chance at winning.
As stated before, it would take a miracle the size of California for the Raiders to win the AFC West. The Lions are very much in the driver’s seat to win the NFC North. If the standings as they are stand true at the end of the season, it’s much more likely that a quarterback who led his team to a division crown for the first time in the history of the NFC North would get it over the one who got his team a wild-card berth.
Other possible candidates in Matt Ryan and Tom Brady are still in the hunt, but it seems unlikely at this point that they could win. Ryan’s Falcons are struggling down the stretch, and the Patriots went 3-1 without Brady, and he didn’t play the entire season.
The other reason I think that Stafford’s chances are so strong is because the other top two candidates for the MVP reside in Dallas, and the Lions play there week 16 on Monday Night Football. If the Lions beat the Bears and Giants, a Dallas win in prime-time would clinch the NFC North. A big night for Stafford in big D over the best team in football would all but make him a lock for the MVP.
All this is could change in a heartbeat. That’s the nature of the NFL. However the path to the MVP is clear for Stafford, and he has a quarter of a season to go get it.