Tom Brady: NFL MVP Through 12 Weeks?


I simply cannot understand how anyone could possibly think that any quarterback in the NFL is the MVP over Tom Brady this season. I don’t think that Philip Rivers should even be in the conversation. Michael Vick has been great but not MVP quality. I’m sure that many sports fans will disagree with me but I’m going to try to convince you that statistically speaking, Brady is the only prospective MVP candidate at the quarterback position. I’ll stick with Philip Rivers here because Vick hasn’t played enough games yet to recognize his value through week 12. By week 17, Vick may have a better case but not quite yet.

Philip Rivers:

He plays on a team with the best defense in football (YPG). He also happens to play on a team that has the best total offense in football (YPG). His team record? 6-5. The San Diego Chargers have lost to the Chiefs, Seahawks, Raiders, Rams and Patriots. Of those teams, only the Patriots and Chiefs have winning records. So with the best defense in football and the best offense in football they can’t beat the Seahawks, Raiders and Rams? Their six wins are hardly impressive; Jaguars, Cardinals, Titans, Texans, Broncos and Colts. Two of those wins are pretty solid wins against the Jaguars and Colts, but what about the rest of them? Not exactly stellar teams. Rivers has 23 TDs to 9 INTs, a passer rating of 104.9, a great 3,362 yards passing and a 66.2% completion percentage. Rivers great offensive numbers have come with a weak Chargers schedule. The Patriots are the only very good team that they’ve played so far. Rivers threw for 336 yards, but only 1 TD and he threw an INT and threw a backward pass picked up by the Patriots, turning it over twice. His QB rating was 85.1. Rivers hasn’t played a single team in the top 10 defenses (YPG) this season and only 1 in the top 15 (Raiders). So with a great defense, playing terrible defensive teams, Rivers has racked up great personal stats and a 6-5 record. I’m not impressed that Rivers is racking up great statistics against shoddy defenses and he’s still only got 6 wins to boot. Many Chargers fans blame the special teams for the losses and certainly they have had poor luck in the special teams department. Rivers has turned the ball over 12 times this season (3 fumbles lost, 6 total) though and he’s not winning enough games for this team to be considered an MVP. He might not even be the MVP of that team because their defense is so great.

Tom Brady:

Many football pundits have a problem with giving Tom Brady this award because he plays in an easy offense and he doesn’t throw the ball downfield very often. Well, he’s operating his offense better than anyone else in the league this season and he’s having one of the best years of his career. He’s also played against 6 of the top 10 defenses (YPG) this year. That could be why he’s not throwing the ball deep a lot and putting up amazing yardage numbers. He’s playing some of the best teams in football week after week. Brady has a 105.8 passer rating, 23 TDs to 4 INTs, 2,703 yards passing and a 66.3% completion percentage. So Rivers has him beat in yards passing. That’s it for the main statistical categories we measure NFL quarterbacks with. By the way, Brady’s team is 9-2 against much better competition. Brady also has the handicap of playing with the 31st ranked defense (YPG). There are 32 teams in the NFL, only the Redskins have a worse defense (YPG). Yet Brady still gets victories and there is no one one on the Patriots that is even close to as valuable.

I’ve been saying this for a few weeks now, I do not understand how Philip Rivers could beat Brady for MVP. Brady is having a better year in many facets of the game and he’s doing it against better competition. Tom Brady is the NFL MVP through 12 weeks if you’re only comparing him to Philip Rivers. The debate may rage on if you bring up running backs or defensive players but there is no better or more valuable quarterback in the NFL this season.

Is Tom Brady the NFL MVP through week 12?

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  • Nathan Jahnke

    First off you do make some good points for Brady, especially with the quality of opponents. A large part of Rivers appeal is that he has been doing all of this without his usual receivers. His top WR last Vincent Jackson has just played 2 snaps this season. His top receiver this year Malcolm Floyd missed 3 games so far, and most of the Colts game. Naanee has missed 5 games. The teams 3rd receiver Buster Davis got hurt in week 7 and is on IR. Gates has missed 2 games and missed a lot of time in 2 more. Without all of those receivers, he is still playing at a very high level and being productive.

    My main issue with Brady is he had a 3 game stretch where he was playing at a below average level. Against the Chargers, he completed less than 60% of his passes even though only 6 passes were thrown beyond 10 yards and only had 5 yards per attempt. His raw numbers against Minnesota look good, but again he had incompletions on short passes, and on long passes the success was more because of the receivers. Against Cleveland, he had only 53% of his passes completed.

    Also I believe there are better metrics to measure how good a defense is than yards per game. If a good team is winning at the end of a game, they will allow a lot of yards because they are trying to keep the clock running, but just making sure the losing team doesn’t make that big of a play. The number of plays defenses play vary greatly, so something even like yards per play would be better.

    Anyway, that’s my two cents. Brady is definitely one of the best QB’s in the league this year(and for much of the last decade), plus Brady is hot recently while Rivers isn’t doing as well, but I would still give Rivers a small edge. If that trend continues than it’s Brady’s.

    • Kyle

      There probably are better metrics for measuring defense, but there is no doubt that the Patriots have played a much higher quality of opponents. San Diego is one of the best defenses in the league regardless of their number 1 YPG rank. Brady had a poor game against them. I just disagree with your assessment of the Minnesota game altogether and the Browns game Brady was clearly playing with a foot injury that hampered him. The point is that Brady is having a clearly better year than Rivers against much better competition. You needn’t look at the defensive rankings to see that the Patriots have played significantly better teams.

  • DowntownDan

    No doubt that Brady is the MVP at this point in the season. Only person that comes close is Vick, who missed several games. All things equal, Vick may have him beat.

    Sickening that people are even debating Brady or Sanchez in this game. Better passer is clearly Brady. Bigger pretty boy? Now you have a debate: Although the UGGs move by Brady may take the cake!

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