Who wins this year’s Most Valuable Player award in the National Football League? Well, it’s between Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning and Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson.
Both are having stellar seasons, and both are also front runners for the league’s Comeback Player of the Year Award as well. Being a homer, I would like to see Peyton Manning take home the award. But one can’t ignore the absolutely phenomenal season that AP is putting together, just one year removed from his torn ACL and MCL. What’s even more amazing is that he is just 294 yards shy of breaking Erick Dickerson’s single season record for rushing yards (2,105). If he winds breaking that mark, and with two games left on the schedule against Houston and Green Bay it’s not totally impossible, he should be a serious candidate for MVP. Problem is, a non-QB hasn’t won the award since 2006, and for a reason. Unfortunately for non-QB’s, the MVP is a popularity contest, and we all know that the quarterbacks are the hot pick for awards such as MVP. That leaves Adrian Peterson at a disadvantage. But rest assured, if AP winds up breaking Dickerson’s record, he will not be overlooked. This could wind up being one of the closest MVP votes in recent years. I personally think that Peyton will come away with the award, and might even come away with the Comeback POY award to complete the sweep.
Adrian Peterson didn’t go out with his injury until the second to last game of the season last year, so why is he even in the discussion for Comeback POY? He still had a decent year, and this year currently isn’t really considered a “comeback year.” Comeback player of the year awards should be awarded to those who had a terrible year the year prior, or missed an entire year due to injury. AP was injured and did his rehab during the off-season. It was Peyton who had the four neck surgeries and actually missed the entire 2011 season, and is really having the “comeback year” in which he is worthy of the Comeback POY award.
One thing is for sure. Peyton Manning is looking to acquire a different kind of hardware to take home other than the MVP and Comeback POY awards. The kind of award that comes in the Super Bowl winning variety.
Peyton Manning Adrian Peterson
4,659 passing yards 2097 rushing yards
37 TD, 11 INT 11 TD
68.6 CMP % 6.0 avg yards per rush
105.8 QB Rating 2nd-all time single season record