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NFL MVP Odds: Has Joe Burrow Entered the Conversation?

After back-to-back massive performances, Bengals QB Joe Burrow is making a late push up the NFL MVP odds board.
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NFL MVP Odds: Has Joe Burrow Entered the Conversation?

Last week, Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow etched his name into the NFL record books. His 525 passing yards in a key AFC North Division win marked the fourth-most in a single game by any QB in league history. While topping that performance was next to impossible, Burrow still managed to deliver quite the second act in Week 17. Suddenly, the second-year pro is garnering a ton of hype when it comes to the NFL betting MVP odds.

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Joe Burrow Lights Up Chiefs, Leads Bengals to AFC North Division Crown

While Burrow’s stat line last week was historic, it was somewhat undermined by the fact that the opposing Baltimore Ravens’ defensive secondary had been completely gutted by injuries. Such was not the case for Cincinnati’s Week 17 opponent, the Kansas City Chiefs. In fact, the Bengals came into the day as NFL betting underdogs despite last week’s blowout win. Such is the reality of facing the odds-on Super Bowl favorite.

The Bengals fell behind 14-0 early in Sunday’s game, but Burrow was hardly phased. As an encore to last week’s all-time performance, the former No. 1 overall draft pick torched a Chiefs defense that has been playing as well as any unit in the NFL. Burrow completed 30 of 39 passes for a whopping 446 yards and four touchdowns. Yes, you read that correctly. Joe Burrow has now thrown four touchdown passes in each of the last two weeks.

While it was a massive statistical outing for both Burrow and his former LSU teammate, Ja’Marr Chase, both would undoubtedly point to the team results as being the most significant. Burrow outdueled former NFL MVP Patrick Mahomes and the Bengals pulled off a 34-31 upset win. Cincinnati clinched the AFC North Division title and a playoff berth with the victory while also keeping their slim hopes for a first-round bye alive. 

With back-to-back 400-yard passing games late in the season when the Bengals needed them the most, Burrow has suddenly burst into the NFL MVP odds conversation.

Sizing up the NFL MVP Odds and Joe Burrow’s Chances

Even after his monster performance last week, Burrow was still viewed as a longshot as far as the MVP race was concerned. The table below contains the NFL betting odds to win the MVP prior to Week 17 action.

PlayerMVP Odds
Aaron Rodgers-189
Jonathan Taylor+650
Tom Brady+650
Patrick Mahomes+1200
Josh Allen+1200
Dak Prescott+2000
Cooper Kupp+2500
Joe Burrow+5000
Matthew Stafford+5000

After earning NFC Offensive Player of the Month honors for December, Green Bay Packers QB Aaron Rodgers was bumped to an odds-on favorite in the MVP race. Rodgers is bidding to win his second consecutive MVP award. He certainly has had an MVP-caliber season. The biggest question mark regarding Rodgers’ candidacy has been how the liberal media would stomach his personal decision to refuse the COVID vaccine. The willingness to recognize his stellar month of December served as a positive sign in the eyes of many bettors.

As seen in the MVP odds table above, Joe Burrow has a whole host of candidates sitting between him and Rodgers. However, none of the other players in the race had a true odds-altering performance in Week 17. If anything, some probably hurt their MVP campaigns on Sunday. 

So, is it worth betting on Burrow in the NFL MVP odds? Probably not. As a 50-1 longshot coming into Week 17, the perceived mountain he would have to scale over the final two weeks was massive. While Burrow certainly did his part on Sunday afternoon, it’s highly unlikely that he can overtake Rodgers at this point. Assuming the Packers go on to secure the No. 1 seed in the NFC Playoffs, it will be very hard to rip the award out from under him no matter what Burrow does in Week 18.

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Henry has had a passion for sports that few can match for as long as he can remember. What started out as a five-year-old taking interest in the New York Jets and their green jerseys has since become a full-fledged career as a writer and sports betting analyst. His coverage primarily includes the NFL, MLB, NBA, NASCAR, college football, and college basketball. In 2020, he ranked among the top-10 most accurate experts ATS in the BettingPros NFL season contest. You can follow Henry’s sports work on Twitter and other social media platforms @HankTimeSports.

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