Favre Makes Strong Closing Argument For MVP

Posted by Mike Wobschall on January 4, 2010 – 7:44 am

With his otherworldly performance – 25 of 31 for 316 yards and 4 TDs – on Sunday against the Giants in a dominant 44-7 victory, Vikings QB Brett Favre put the finishing touches on a strong closing argument for MVP consideration. In a weekend full of NFL drama, Favre, as no other player did, carried his team to victory in a big spot.

Although team achievement always trumps individual accomplishment, the debate about who should win this year’s NFL MVP award is nearly as compelling as the debate about which team should be favored in this year’s Super Bowl tournament.

There are so many things to consider in this MVP debate, from stats to team record to the intangibles an individual brings to his team. And the bottom line is there are probably 3 or 4 players worthy of this year’s award.

The top 5 vote-getters – in my estimation – this year will be (in alphabetical order): Drew Brees, Favre, Chris Johnson, Peyton Manning and Philip Rivers.

Given this year’s set of circumstances, I believe the MVP should be a QB, which leaves out Johnson, who broke Marshall Faulk’s yards from scrimmage record this year.

With this debate down to a quartet of QBs, it becomes nearly impossible to separate the 4. But a very strong argument can be made for Favre.

At 40 years of age, Favre had his best season – he completed 68.4% of his passes for 4,202 yards with a pristine 33-7 TD-INT ratio and a passer rating of 107.2. The passer rating is the highest single-season rating of his career, he’s tied for 2nd in TD passes behind Brees, threw fewer INTs than Brees, Manning or Rivers and had a similar completion percentage to Manning and a better one than Rivers. And, while the other 3 QBs coasted through the conclusion of the regular season, Favre put an exclamation point on it by passing for 637 yards, 6 TDs and 0 INTs in his final 2 games.

The statistical angle on this debate is pretty close to even – Brees was #1 in passer rating but Favre had more TDs and finished just 2.4 points behind in rating. When you consider some of the intangible factors, however, it gets even closer.

Some of the shine is wiped away from Brees’ star because the Saints lost their perfect record down the stretch and had other close calls late in the season against the St. Louis Rams and Washington Redskins. So that bumps Manning up into the top 2 in this discussion with Favre.

Manning controls a game at the line of scrimmage as no other QB seems to do. He’s a step ahead of everyone else and demands a high level of play from those around him. In fact, he increases the ability of those around him. But Favre has done the same thing this year. Favre has had the miracle finishes (vs. San Francisco), the dominant performances (Weeks 10-12 and vs. NY Giants) and the gutty performances (Weeks 1 and 2) that we’ve seen from him throughout his career. And then he topped it all off by having the best statistical season of his 19-year run in the NFL while also leading the Vikings to a 12-4 record and the NFC’s #2 seed.

Anyone who has watched the Vikings in recent years knows exactly how valuable Favre is to this team. And that’s what puts him over the top, perhaps, in this year’s MVP debate. We’ve seen this every year from Manning, it seems. But what Favre did this season you don’t see every year.

The Vikings offense has a different swagger and confidence with #4 under center. When the game is on the line, no longer do Vikings fans hope it’s their defense that can somehow save the day. Now, Vikings fans are confident Favre will get the job done and the defense will close the door.

I don’t know who should win this year’s MVP award. Brees, Favre and Manning would all be good choices and it depends which angle you take (stats, team accomplishment, intangibles, etc.) as to who has the edge. But I do know that no matter which angle you take on this debate, the one consistent factor his Favre – he’s either #1 or #2 in every aspect. He’s done everything he could do to win it.

Posted in All, Mike Wobschall | 14 Comments »

14 Responses to “Favre Makes Strong Closing Argument For MVP”

  1. By Mikey on Jan 4, 2010 | Reply

    For as much as I’d love to see a Viking win it, I think Manning is the correct choice. Although you could really say he’s the most valuable player to his team every season. The Colts would win 10 less games without him every year. Taking that into consideration, it would make sense to consider Favre this year because of the swagger he brought to this team. I’m cool with either choice.

  2. By CajunViking on Jan 4, 2010 | Reply

    All 3 of the above, Favre, Brees and Manning are very deserving of the award. Of course as a Vikings fan I’m hoping Brett gets it. One more point, there could be co-MVP’s this year ’cause it has happened before.

  3. By Brth on Jan 4, 2010 | Reply

    Brett and only Brett could force me from a Packers fan to a Vikings fan..not all agrees with me since I’m in Wisc. I just love to watch him. He’s 40 years old and the magic is still there. He has a unique ability to get his teamates to want to win and makes them work harder. He has the *IT* factor when it comes to football. He just loves the game and he just wants to mplay and play he does. MVP is more than just touch’s the man behind the ball.

  4. By Greg on Jan 4, 2010 | Reply

    Brett & Payton should share this…and hopefully we see them play each other in the Super Bowl….you could not ask for a better match! I’m a lifelong Viking fan, and now I live in Indy. Wow, that would be fun!! Go Vikes!!

  5. By Randz527 on Jan 4, 2010 | Reply

    You can not share a MVP award. Its not right. You either are the MVP or your not.

  6. By ColtNavy51 on Jan 4, 2010 | Reply

    Much is made of how Payton has made his rookies better. And that deserves accolades. Brett made his whole team better. Rice, Shank, Harvin, where would they be without the ol’ man?
    Whoever gets it, Brett did one heckuva job with the Vikes, and he deserves their thanks if nothing else.

  7. By Bruce on Jan 4, 2010 | Reply

    Make your voice heard on the poll right now! Vote for Favre!!!

  8. By Bruce on Jan 4, 2010 | Reply

    And for those people or sportswriters say that Manning deserves it. Consider this…Favre came into a brand new team late without any practice. Favre helped send 2-3 people to the Pro Bowl by his play. The Vikings record would be a lot worse without Favre because the defense played worse this year in some games! Favre ends up with a better passer rating tham Manning. Favre had 9 less interceptions than Manning. Favre had the same touchdowns as Manning. Manning has been with this team a lot longer and knows how his tight end and receivers run their routes better. Manning gets to call more plays and audibles than Favre does. Manning has had a more consistant O-line than Favre has had. Favre is doing this at an age of 40 and he should get a handicap for that as well. Favre makes his players better! This list could go on and on, but FAVRE DESERVES THIS MVP MORE THAN MANNING HANDS DOWN!!!

  9. By VIKING in nh on Jan 4, 2010 | Reply

    plain and simple,,,,, if tavaris jackson is the qb the vikes would not be where they are now. favre has done the job and and has helped the team greatly! his best season !

  10. By Lor on Jan 4, 2010 | Reply

    Brett also changed me from a Packer fan to a viking fan. I hope the vikings go all the way with Brett leading them to a Super Bowl win and Brett I hope you get MVP you deserve it. Thomson and Mc Carthy deserve all of it. I’m a WI viking fan!!

  11. By Mark Wertz on Jan 4, 2010 | Reply

    What Brett did in the second half of the Chicago game in weather conditions he was thought not to be able to play in put me over the top for his winning the MVP. As bad as the blocking was and without the fumble by Peterson they still would have won the game. Than to come back after the loss and play the best game of his life. No Question as to MVP. Packer fan

  12. By Stephanie on Jan 4, 2010 | Reply

    Bruce I totally I agree with you. I really hope Brett gets MVP and I think he deserves it. he has played outstanding most of the season and this article pretty much says it all. I love Peyton Manning, but I watched a couple Colts games where Manning had a very off day and the defense pulled it out in the end. that’s not to say he isn’t a huge part of their success, but if it’s about games won, just like with the Saints, their defense stepped up and won it for them a couple times. in Chicago the Vikes should have won the game b/c of Brett’s play, but there were several break downs on defense and special teams and the fumble in the end.

  13. By Nate F. on Jan 4, 2010 | Reply

    do you think vikes should go for the following players
    Julius Peppers
    Shawn Merriman
    Osi Umenyiora
    Terell Owens
    Randy Moss (if his contract’s up)

    I really want to see this as a blog to hear people’s comments about it


  14. By peter on Jan 9, 2010 | Reply

    I would say Favre is unmatched this season, and there is a strong argument that Favre’s season exceeds Brady in 2007 and Manning in 2004 since Favre did it without elite receivers. Adrian Peterson was actually a disadvantage to Favre’s stats, as his runs more often stopped drives than rather than extending them, and he took away many potential easy TDs from the 1 yard line. Also facing “8 in the box” was supposed to be an advantage by providing 1:1 matchups, but this was a theory that never materialized, and Favre threw into double and triple coverage while being pressured throughout most games.. He also threw more TDs against playoff teams, since he tends to not play much in the 2nd half against weaker opponents. Playing against top defenses has not been a problem as his numbers were better in his 5 games this year against defenses ranked in the top 5 (all playoff teams), which means he may exceed his TD output in the playoffs. Against the top 3, Favre threw 10 TDs and no INTs. That brings up an important one that is somehow being ignored. If Favre manages 11 TDs and no interceptions in the playoffs, he will set the record for greatest TD/INT ratio in NFL history. He is currently ranked 4th, and needs 2 TDs to overtake Manning, 8 TDs to overtake DeBerg, and 11 TDs to overtake Brady:

    Tom Brady New England 2007 6.25 (50 TDs, 8 INTs)
    Steve DeBerg Kansas City 1990 5.75 (23 TDs, 4 INTs)
    Peyton Manning Indianapolis 2004 4.90 (49 TDs, 10 INTs)
    Brett Favre Minnesota 2009 4.71 (33 TDs, 7 INTs)

    Favre’s best chance at the record would be 2 home games in the playoffs, where Favre has 21 TDs and 2 INTs for the season. The best teams to face would probably be first the Packers (7 TDs, 0 INTs), then the Eagles, then the Chargers in the Super Bowl.

    Keep holding your breath Favre haters.

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