Week 17 NFL MVP Odds: Lamar Jackson Is The New Favorite, But Is He Vulnerable?
A chaotic Christmas saw NFL Most Valuable Player odds change wildly, even during the same game. Tua Tagovailoa beating Dak Prescott on Sunday put life into one longer shot bid, while killing the hopes of another. Monday Night’s collapse by Brock Purdy at the hands of Lamar Jackson’s Ravens now sees Purdy’s campaign essentially over. Meanwhile, Jackson’s now at the top of the odds board. Week 17 NFL MVP odds are a wild market with only two weeks left.
Live longshots could include 49ers running back Christian McCaffrey. Meanwhile, Bills QB Josh Allen still looms, leading the NFL in total touchdowns but also turnovers. Could Tua Tagovailoa swoop in and steal it? Let’s discuss.
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Lamar Jackson MVP Odds:
As we wrote last week, a Lamar win on Monday has jumped him to the top of the odds board. Now that it’s happened, he’s unsurprisingly the favorite. Lamar will likely win MVP if the Ravens win their two remaining games. Even if the Ravens win in Week 17, clinch the 1-seed, and lose to Pittsburgh in Week 18 (potentially with starters resting), it’s still likely his award.
The only other four-loss teams would be Philadelphia and San Franisco. Lamar beats Brock Purdy in this situation.
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Lamar Jackson Ends Brock Prudy’s Chances
While Brock Purdy’s performance looks worse on paper than in reality, this game was vindication in the minds of every skeptic of the Iowa State product. Purdy’s hurdle to clear was never the advanced or traditional stats. By EPA, he’s been far and away the best QB in the league, even after four interceptions.
The problem is Purdy is now indelibly seen as just another Kyle Shanahan QB. In the same way Jimmy Garoppolo managed top-five Dropback EPA results last year before getting hurt, Purdy’s case has collapsed. Whether it’s fair or not, his whole case was that he was more than just the product of a perfect offensive ecosystem. That disaster, on Christmas Day, in primetime? The reputational damage will take time to repair.
Christian McCaffrey MVP Odds:
Christian McCaffrey won’t be damaged as much by Purdy’s four INT game. The case for CMC is simple – the Niners close with games against Washington and the LA Rams, and four touchdowns combined are in play. If the Niners dominate the next two weeks through CMC and Baltimore stumbles, the path is open, even though no RB has won MVP since Adrian Peterson in 2012.
Where this gets very interesting, however, is what happens if Baltimore loses next week against the Dolphins.
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Tua Tagovailoa MVP Odds:
Tua has been oft-dismissed in these pages, mostly because he was yet to put up an excellent win this season. After beating Dallas, the path is clear for Miami. If they beat Baltimore next week, they’ll have the tiebreak going into Week 18 for the 1-seed. While they have to play Buffalo in Week 18 for the spot, the idea they wouldn’t be small favorites at home in that matchup seems farcical.
The case for Tua is simple – the writers who vote for MVP view it as a QB award, and Tua could be the QB of a 1-seed with wins over Dallas, Baltimore, and Buffalo on the bounce. If he pulls that off, it’s his, in all likelihood.
Lamar would be out – Tua’s statistical case dwarfs Lamar’s. Purdy’s out, and while McCaffrey could stat pad against bad teams to some more yards and TDs, that might only serve to solidify the traditional RB/WR for Offensive Player Of The Year and best QB for MVP split.
Tyreek Hill looms, but the thing about these awards is that they are voted on by the media. Tyreek Hill has a history of domestic violence issues. To get anyone to actively vote for a domestic abuser when it’s already nearly impossible to get MVP votes for non-QBs seems like an uphill climb.
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Week 17 NFL MVP Odds Final Thoughts
Now, the chances of Tua winning those two games are admittedly not great. Buffalo seems to have found something, and Baltimore looked incredible on Christmas night. But the thing is, Buffalo looked invincible against Dallas and got taken to the wire by Easton Stick’s Chargers. Dallas whooped Philly before getting blown out by Buffalo. The Niners looked invincible when they steamrolled through their post-bye schedule in recent weeks before giving the game away to Baltimore.
The Ravens and Lamar Jackson are currently overvalued in market. We all saw them look like the ’85 Bears mixed with the Greatest Show On Turf. How could they then lose to a Miami team we all think is inferior to San Fran? They could lose in the same way three six-plus-point favorites lost outright between Sunday Night Football and Monday Night Football in Week 16.
Lamar’s likely the MVP. There’s still a good chance, though, it won’t be him.
There are paths open for both Tua and CMC. Week 17 NFL MVP odds should be viewed through the lens of how much changed this week. It could totally reinvent itself again by this time next week.
Best of luck betting NFL MVP odds!
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