Last week, Russell Wilson, Carson Wentz and Tom Brady led our MVP rankings. Wilson struggled in a loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars, Wentz tore his ACL in Los Angeles and Brady had one of the worst performances of his career in a loss to the Miami Dolphins.
So what now? The NFL MVP race is kind of a mess.
Here’s how we view an odd race with three weeks remaining in the 2017 regular season.
1. Seattle Seahawks QB Russell Wilson (last week: 1st): Eleven quarterbacks have higher passer ratings than Wilson, who is coming off a poor overall performance in a tough loss. But he still made several huge plays in a losing effort and has done more with less than anybody else in the game. This could come down to whether or not the Seahawks make the playoffs.
2. New England Patriots QB Tom Brady (last week: 3rd): Brady is still the league’s highest-rated passer, but he didn’t look right at all in an ugly loss to Miami and hasn’t performed well the last two weeks. Wouldn’t be surprised if he rebounded, though, in order to win his first MVP since 2010.
3. New Orleans Saints QB Drew Brees (last week: 5th): They lost in Atlanta, but Brees posted a triple-digit passer rating for the fourth consecutive week. He’s quietly right there, and could leapfrog Wilson and Brady with a strong finish.
4. Philadelphia Eagles QB Carson Wentz (last week: 2nd): Wentz made such a huge impact when it mattered most over the course of the first 13 games that if everyone else struggles and the Eagles finish poorly, he could still have a shot here.
5. Los Angeles Rams QB Jared Goff (last week: 6th): Goff is right there too after a third consecutive strong performance despite the loss to the Eagles. He’s right there in every key statistical category.
6. Kansas City Chiefs QB Alex Smith (last week: 7th): The league’s second-highest-rated passer has sort of bounced back the last couple weeks, but it might be too little too late.
7. Minnesota Vikings QB Case Keenum (last week: 4th): It’s a hell of a story, but he’s probably toast after a poor performance in a tough loss to the Carolina Panthers.
8. Pittsburgh Steelers WR Antonio Brown (last week: 8th): Brown deserves to be named here because he’s got a chance to break Calvin Johnson’s single-season receiving yardage record and he’s been more dominant than ever this season. Problem is a wide receiver has never won this thing, and that isn’t going to change this season.