Despite the loss of Davante Adams, Green Bay Packers superstar Aaron Rodgers will win his sixth NFL MVP title.
Many may balk at the idea, but there is a clear path for Rodgers to win, even if most can’t see it yet. It won’t be easy, but Rodgers will almost certainly win his third consecutive NFL MVP award this season.
Of course, there are many other candidates. Fans can point to all of the NFL’s young guns, including Joe Burrow, Justin Herbert and Josh Allen. Others may simply dismiss Rogers as voter fatigue.
Some may point to the obvious – the departure of Davante Adams, the NFL’s best receiver. Is that enough to completely derail Rodgers’ MVP aspirations?
Davante Adams says Aaron Rodgers 🐐 pic.twitter.com/rWIqmwq99y
— PFF (@PFF) August 24, 2022
Adams, of course, was dealt to the Las Vegas Raiders and subsequently received a five-year, $141.25 million contract with his new team. In fact, his departure may ironically end Rodgers’ MVP hat trick.
Let’s discuss three reasons below.
Packers QB Aaron Rodgers 2022 NFL MVP
3. Rodgers elevates others
Packers are 7-0 without Davante Adams since 2019. Considering how talented Adams is, that’s pretty amazing. On the other hand, it also reveals Aaron Rodgers’ ability to elevate and improve the players around him. Note that Adams and Marquez Valdes-Scantling were released by the Packers.
Looking to 2022, the Packers have plenty of new receivers. This will surely cause a big problem. They added second-round draft pick Christian Watson, fourth-round pick Romeo Doubs and veteran Sammy Watkins to their roster. Allen Lazard and Randall Cobb are among the returnees.
This is serviceable. It’s not perfect, but Rodgers can work with it.
If Rodgers can elevate this receiving corps, they won’t just make up for Adams’ departure. They will likely shock the world and it will be a story that is unlikely to top the awards season.
2. Packers will make a ton
Another factor is that many consider the Packers’ defense to be one of the best in the league. Of course, Green Bay can also run the ball. They are actually projected to win a lot of games.
Winning is important. MVPs play on winning teams. This is a winning formula. So Rodgers needs to buy another piece of hardware.
Keep in mind that the Packers will win their division again this season. Minnesota and Chicago have new head coaches, and this will certainly be an adjustment year for these teams. The Lions, well, won’t really be in the mix. Detroit has never won the NFC North division championship and won’t be in 2022.
This division is the Packers’ loss, and they won’t. In each of the previous three seasons, they won 13 games while winning the division title. Assuming the Packers win 12-13 more games, Rodgers will surely be at the top of the MVP race.
1. Story matters
Brett Favre, who led the Green Bay Packers from 1995-1997, was the only player to win a three-peat as NFL MVP.
It will be extremely difficult for Rodgers to repeat what his former teammate and predecessor achieved in the 1990s.
But it is possible.
Arguably, Rodgers is already approaching Mount Rushmore status, winning the MVP four times (2011, 2014, 2020 and 2021). Rodgers joins an exclusive group of champions who have won three or more MVPs. That said, only Peyton Manning has more MVP awards than Aaron Rodgers with five.
Getting #5 makes for a great story, and the narrative matters.
– Green Bay Packers (@packers) August 29, 2022
It’s not enough to collect empty numbers to win MVP. Last year, Tampa Bay quarterback Tom Brady dominated the stat sheet. In fact, he had more touchdowns and more yards than Rodgers, but he didn’t come anywhere close to winning the GOAT MVP.
Brady had 43 touchdowns to Rodgers’ 37 and 5,316 yards, 1,200 more than Brady Rodgers.
Still, Rodgers was the clear winner, receiving 39 of the 50 votes cast by the AP jury. Brady had just 10 votes and Rams WR Cooper Kupp had one.
Brady didn’t win for a simple reason. Selectors emphasize the difficulty and quality of victory. Who did you beat when it came to writing those big numbers? It all boils down to the MVP narrative.
The Packers had some big wins last season. They went into the desert and beat the undefeated Cardinals (7-0 at the time). Rodgers beat the 49ers on the road after recovering a possession with 37 seconds left and trailing. It was a Sunday night contest that surprised NFL fans across the country. These are the moments in a season that give rise to legendary status. These are make-or-break narrative elements.
Rodgers certainly had the numbers to tell the story. He was the first quarterback since 1992 to lead the league in TD passes, completion percentage, passer rating and interception percentage (1.0) in the same season. That’s when Steve Young won his first of two MVPs.
Davante Adams’ departure actually contributes to Rodgers’ MVP narrative as well. So even with the star WR gone, Rodgers should still be the MVP favorite in 2022.