Aaron Rodgers: The 2020 NFL MVP?
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For some, football is a side hobby. For others, it is a passion that can turn into a career. But ever so often, a player comes along for whom becoming the best is inevitable. One of those lucky few came along in 2005, by the name of Aaron Rodgers.
Rodgers has played many great seasons in his illustrious 16-year career. He was named the MVP in the 2011 Super Bowl and has since consistently been one of the top quarterbacks in the league. Despite his sustained excellence, he has never been as precise, accurate, and successful as he has been in this recent season—and the statistics back him up.
For starters, Rodgers beat his own record for best completion percentage in a season, boasting an incredible 70.7 percent pass completion. Not only is his record the best completion percentage in the league, but it reigns at least one percent higher than that of other serious MVP contenders. High completion percentage is one of the clearest indicators that distinguishes the great quarterbacks from the exceptional quarterbacks, and it is abundantly clear that Rodgers is a step above the rest.
In addition, Rodgers is known for having the best passer rating of all time. Rodgers has continued his dominance this season, as he has the second best single-season passer rating of all time, sitting at an astonishingly high 121.5. This record is topped only by his own from the 2011 season. Aside from his high statistics, Rodgers has many notable feats, including “the NFL single-season records for games with a 100-plus passer rating,” “games with a 100-plus passer rating and three-plus touchdown passes,” “games with three-plus touchdown passes and zero interceptions,” and “games with two-plus touchdown passes and a completion percentage of 70-plus.”
Due to his unmatched success this season, it is absolutely no surprise that reporters have hailed Rodgers as the frontrunner for MVP. According to ProFootballTalk, “Others in the conversation were Bills quarterback Josh Allen, Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes, and Titans running back Derrick Henry. This year, however, was Rodgers’s year.” In fact, 46 of the 50 Associated Press voters elected Rodgers to the All-Pro team, a common indicator of the season MVP. News outlets have continuously stated with confidence that Rodgers is and will be named this year’s MVP, and we can be assured that executives will follow suit.
While Aaron Rodgers may seem irreplaceable, he is actually far from it. His team, the Green Bay Packers, drafted a quarterback who would potentially take his place as starting quarterback prior to the 2020 season. In an interview with sports commentator Kyle Brandt, Rodgers said that while he understood this decision, he was still disappointed by it: “I wanted to play my entire career in Green Bay. I love the city.”
However, instead of shriveling in the face of a possible replacement, Aaron Rodgers faced this changing team dynamic head-on. Clearly, the mounting pressure did nothing but motivate him, as he played one of his best seasons thus far and will be headed to the divisional round of the playoffs.
If Rodgers is in fact named MVP, this will not be the first time that Rodgers has won the title—but the third—as he won this award both in 2011 and 2014. Winning a third time would be a huge accomplishment, making him only the sixth player to do so in NFL history. Though Rodgers faced some tough competition throughout the season, in the end, his personal statistics and overall team contributions have propelled him far beyond other players. As an all-decade quarterback late in his career, this MVP win and overall groundbreaking season is a testament to Rodgers’s unmatched talent and game-changing influence throughout the years.