The Cheapest NFL MVP

The Cheapest NFL MVP
Untitled Document

The Cheapest NFL MVP

Potential 2012 NFL MVP candidates and their salaries

MVP Candidates
With the 2012 NFL regular season winding down, the list of potential MVP candidates is beginning to show face. Our experts have singled out these 5 as the current front-runners
Player Age 2012 Cap Value Fun Facts
Peyton Manning
36 $18,000,000 Many experts predicted Manning would indeed be able to continue his career, but you'll be hard-pressed to find one that saw THIS coming. Peyton is completing 68% of his passes for 3,500 yards, 29 touchdowns, and only 9 interceptions. His 292 yards per game average is the second highest of his career (294, 2010).
Adrian Peterson
Running Back
27 $11,150,000 Direct off a torn MCL and ACL injury in mid-2011, Peterson's comeback is nothing short of heroic. To date the Vikings back has rushed for 1,446 yards, 8 TDs, and caught 36 balls for another 195 yards. The Vikings may need to win out in order to keep AP a top candidate.
Tom Brady
35 $8,000,000 Terrfic Tom has been so consistently terrific for the better part of 12 season, that is eliteness in many ways remains under the radar at times. After a rocky start to the 2012 campaign for the Pats, Brady has once again taken over the AFC, with 3,537 yards, 65% completion rate, 25 touchdowns and only 4 interceptions. Natural order seems to be restored with Manning and Brady leading the AFC into the postseason.
Matt Ryan
27 $12,990,000 The Falcons have taken a lot of risks in the past years to gain strides in the NFC, and none of that would have been necessary without the immediate impact of franchise QB Matt Ryan since 2008. Due for a big-time extension in the next 18 months, Ryan has thrown for 3,590 yards, 22 touchdowns, 13 interceptions, and a 68% completion rate to the lead the 11-1 Falcons.
J.J. Watt
Defensive End
22 $2,553,977 The departure of Mario Williams this offseason may have surprised many outsiders, but internally the Houston franchise knew they were simply making way for the next elite pass rusher in J.J. Watt. Through 13 weeks in 2012 Watt has 50 tackles, 10 assists, 15 pass deflections, 1 forced fumble, and a whopping 15.5 sacks. He's the clearcut defensive player of the year in the AFC - and many think even more.

Looking back over the past 10 years of MVP winners, a few familiar names jump out. But even more shocking might be the rare company that Texas DE J.J. Watt is being considered for. It's been 25 years since a defensive player has won the league MVP (Lawrence Taylor, 1986). Equally as shocking might be the financial value that the Texans are getting out of star in 2012. Looking back over the past 10 years, even with the obvious inflation to NFL salaries, J.J. Watt would be the least-paid MVP, by more than $1.1 million. He's performing at a veteran superstar level while still in his rookie contract, and the 11-1 Texans are bearing the fruits.

Year MVP Salary Cap Value
2002 Rich Gannon
Oakland Raiders
2003 Peyton Manning, Indianapolis Colts
Steve McNair, Tennessee Titans
2004 Peyton Manning (2)
Indianapolis Colts
2005 Shaun Alexander
Seattle Seahawks
(Franchise tag)
2006 LaDainian Tomlinson
San Diego Chargers
2007 Tom Brady
New England Patriots
2008 Peyton Manning (3)
Indianapolis Colts
2009 Peyton Manning (4)
Indianapolis Colts
2010 Tom Brady (2)
New England Patriots
2011 Aaron Rodgers
Green Bay Packers