When it comes to finding non-quarterbacks on the betting list for who will win the NFL award predictions MVP next season, expecting to do some scrolling. Before you get to Tennessee Titans running back Derrick Henry, there are 16 other players who have better odds to win the MVP. Not that Henry, who is +5000 to win the award, isn’t capable of putting up huge numbers.
When it comes to college basketball picks, it is often better to try and find good value, the same holds true for NFL award predictions MVP picks. Since the Associated Press started awarding an MVP in 1957, 17 running backs have won the MVP award. However, as the league has become more passing-oriented, running backs have won the award less frequently. No non-quarterback has won the award since Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson won the award in 2012.
Buffalo quarterback Josh Allen is the preseason favorite to win the award. But perhaps this could be one of those unique years where a signal caller doesn’t win MVP. Here’s a look at some bizarre cases when non-quarterbacks and running backs broke through to garner individual honors.
Alan Page, Defensive tackle, Minnesota Vikings
Minnesota Vikings defensive tackle Alan Page was a feared member of the famed “Purple People Eaters” defensive front. In a year where there was no clear-cut candidate, Page earned enough first-place votes, 16 out of 60, to win the 1971 MVP award. Page finished with nine sacks in 14 games for Minnesota.
Page also recovered three fumbles and returned those for eight yards. Page had a long career in the NFL award predictions, playing for 16 years, including four years in Chicago, and finished with 18.5 sacks. Like anyone making college basketball picks today knows, Page was a clear-cut Hall-of-Famer and was inducted into the Pro Football Hall-of-Famer in 1988.
Mark Moseley, Placekicker, Washington Redskins
Mark Moseley’s award may be the only sarcastic one ever handed out. During the strike-shortened 1982 season, Moseley, a kicker, was given 35 of 84 first-place votes to become the first and likely only kicker to win the award. During the nine-game schedule, Washington’s kicker led the league by making 20 of his 21 field goal attempts
Moseley would win the award by two votes on San Diego Chargers quarterback Dan Fouts. Moseley, who was the NFL award predictions last straight-on kicker, wasn’t known for accuracy during his career that lasted from 1970 to 1986. He made 65.6 percent (300-of-457) of his career attempts.
There were some rumors media at the time made the selection as a protest against the players going on strike. But anyone making college basketball predictions knows, it’s difficult to know why these things happened.
Lawrence Taylor, linebacker, New York Giants
Lawrence Taylor partied hard off the field but grew into one of the greatest linebackers of all time during his tenure with the New York Giants from 1981 to 1993. Taylor’s career reached an apex in 1986 when he set an NFL award predictions record with 20.5 sacks. It was part of a stretch where Taylor recorded double-digit sack totals from 1984 to 1990.
Taylor finished with 142 in his career.
Non-quarterbacks to consider this year
Los Angeles Rams wide receiver Cooper Kupp put up giant numbers last season and could be inclined to set records this season. Kupp finished with 1,947 receiving yards and 16 touchdowns last season, leading the league in receiving yards (1,947) and touchdowns (16). Kupp, who is +5000 to win NFL award predictions MVP, will also have a solid quarterback returning to feed him the ball in Matthews Stafford.
A wide receiver has never been MVP. Colts running back Jonathan Taylor may have more space to run with Matt Ryan joining Indianapolis in free agency. Taylor averaged 106.5 yards per game rushing, which led the league. Taylor piled up a league-high 1,811 yards and also piled up 18 touchdowns. He is also +5000 to win NFL award predictions MVP.