NFL MVP Race: Is Kansas City Chiefs' QB Patrick Mahomes the Betting Favorite?
But Kansas City's Patrick Mahomes reminded the league on Sunday that he remains one of the most clutch and talented quarterbacks in the league.
Mahomes orchestrated a six-play, 75-yard game-winning touchdown drive, capping it with a 17-yard touchdown pass for a 30-27 win over the Los Angeles Chargers Sunday in Los Angeles.
Mahomes Prepared for Late-Game Heroics
"We do this a lot. Coach (Andy) Reid prepares us for these moments,” Mahomes said of the score. “We just went through what we do at practice every single day, and we executed.”
Mahomes completed 20 of 34 passes for 329 yards and three total touchdowns.
It was Mahomes’ second game-winning drive of the season. He led Kansas City to a 20-17 overtime win over the Tennessee Titans, finishing with two touchdowns and over 500 yards of total offense, including 446 yards passing and 63 yards rushing.
"When you get to those ends of the game situations," Mahomes said after the win, "you have to try to go out there and make it happen."
The Chiefs have won four straight and five of their last six. With Mahomes’ strong play, he’s managed to become the overwhelming favorite in the MVP race.
Here’s a breakdown of the favorites and the long shots as the NFL season continues.
Favorites to win NFL MVP
Patrick Mahomes, -160 FanDuel Sportsbook
In addition to the game-winning drives, Mahomes also leads the league with 3,265 yards while completing 66.2% of his passes. He has a 4:1 touchdown-interception ratio with 28 touchdowns and seven interceptions.
At 8-2, the Chiefs are a game up on the rest of the AFC for home-field advantage, which could solidify Mahomes’ case for his second MVP.
Tua Tagovailoa +500 DraftKings Sportsbook
Statistically, Tagovailoa has been one of the top quarterbacks in the NFL this season.
The Miami Dolphins' quarterback ranks first in Expected Points Added per dropback and passer rating (118.4).
Tagovailoa has also thrown for 18 touchdowns and only three interceptions and ranks sixth in passing yards per game (283.1)
Jalen Hurts +600 FanDuel
Hurts has led the Eagles to the best record in the league at 9-1. He’s fresh off of putting together his own game-winning drive with a 7-yard touchdown run to top the Indianapolis Colts 17-16.
Hurts ranks fourth in QB rating at 106.5 and has been the top dual-threat QB this season, passing for 2,407 yards and 15 touchdowns with just three interceptions. He’s also run for 440 yards and eight scores, but will likely need Mahomes and the Chiefs to struggle to overtake him for MVP honors.
Longshots to Win NFL MVP
Geno Smith +4000 DraftKings
The Russell Wilson trade continues to look worse for the Denver Broncos with each loss and anemic offensive showing. But it’s now exasperated with how well Geno Smith has performed for the Seattle Seahawks.
Smith ranks second in the league in QB rating (108) and has passed for 2,474 yards and 17 touchdowns while throwing only four interceptions.
But more importantly, Smith has the Seahawks tied atop the NFC West lead with the San Francisco 49ers at 6-4 when many predicted Seattle would contend for the No. 1 draft pick.
Kirk Cousins +6000 DraftKings
The Vikings are coming off their worst showing of the season, losing 40-3 to the Dallas Cowboys. But at 8-2, Minnesota is still in contention for the top seed in the NFC.
With a stellar closing stretch and the No. 1 seed, Kirk Cousins is a longshot with a little bit of life in the MVP race.
His numbers are OK: 2,461 yards, 14 touchdowns and eight interceptions. He’d have to play his best down the stretch and lead the Vikings to the top seed to enter amongst the favorites, but the opportunity for those things to happen is still there, especially with offensive assets such as Justin Jefferson and Dalvin Cook.
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