2020 NFL MVP Odds: Patrick Mahomes the Opening Favorite

Credit:

Andy Lyons/Getty Images. Pictured: Patrick Mahomes (15) of the Kansas City Chiefs at Super Bowl LIV.

Feb 04, 2020, 08:00 AM EST

That didn’t take long. Just one day after the end of the 2019 NFL season, the Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook released odds for the 2020 NFL MVP. No point in waiting, I suppose.

Lamar Jackson, who opened at 50-1 last year, unanimously won the 2019 MVP following his dynamic season in which he and the Ravens achieved terrific regular season success.

Jackson is not the favorite for 2020, though, as oddsmakers make the 2018 MVP and Super Bowl 54 MVP Patrick Mahomes the man to beat.

2020 NFL MVP Odds

Top of the Board

  • Patrick Mahomes (+400) could have had a better case to win a second consecutive MVP this past year had he not missed about 2.5 games worth of action during the middle of the season. While it was Jackson who won the regular season accolades, I’m sure Mahomes is fine with how his season ended.
  • On the other hand, I’m willing to guess that Lamar Jackson (+600) is not happy with the way his season ended. Jackson’s much improved passing numbers (QB rating jumped nearly 30 points from 2018 to 2019), record-breaking running numbers and 14-2 record made him an easy choice for the award in 2019. Will he be able to repeat his magic again next year?
  • Halfway through the 2019 season, it looked like the voting was going to come down to Russell Wilson (+1000) and Jackson, but it was the latter who ran away with award down the stretch. Still looking for his first career MVP, Wilson’s preseason odds are much better than they were last year (+2000).

Yesteryear’s Elite

  • Checking in with the worst preseason odds since 2009 per SportsOddsHistory.com, Aaron Rodgers (+2000) could be an early value pick in the eyes of many. His numbers may not be as great as they used to be, but he’s probably still considered to be a top-3 quarterback in the eyes of many.
  • Drew Brees (+2000) is not even confirmed to play next year, but if he doesn’t retire, chances are he’ll still be pretty good. The 41-year-old missed some time last year, but led the league in completion percentage for the third straight season at 74.3%.
  • Retirement appears to be an unlikely option for Tom Brady (+3000) at this point, but whether he remains a Patriot is up in the air. In fact,  DraftKings recently offered odds on the GOAT’s next team, and while the Pats are favored, it’s certainly not a lock.

The 100-1 QBs

  • The worst odds for any listed quarterbacks are 100-1, which is what more than a dozen QBs are listed at. Among them are Jared Goff, who took a big step backwards last year after leading his team to the Super Bowl in 2018.
  • Derek Carr, an MVP candidate in 2016, is among the QBs in this group. Carr is actually coming off one of his best seasons in several key statistical areas, including completion percentage, passing yards, yards per attempt and passer rating.
  • With Eli Manning retired, the New York Giants are officially Daniel Jones’ team. Jones started 12 games in his rookie season, showing some expected ups-and-downs for a young QB. In one late-season start vs. the Packers, he threw three picks. Next game out vs. Washington, he went for 352 yards and five TDs.

Rookies

  • Though a rookie has never won the MVP, plenty can be found on the odds list. The best of the bunch is Tua Tagovailoa (+8000), though many expect Heisman winner and national champion Joe Burrow (+10000) to be the first overall pick in the draft.
  • Justin Herbert (+10000) is a third potential top-10 pick at quarterback.
  • Several non-QB rookies can also be found on the list, including Chase Young (+10000), Ceedee Lamb and Jerry Jeudy (+50000). 

Non-Quarterbacks

  • After a monster 2019, Christian McCaffrey (+3000) has the best odds of any non-quarterback. From 1961-1999, non-QBs won 15 of 40 (37.5%) MVPs handed out. Since then, it’s become about twice as tough, with just four of 21 winners (19%) this century being non-QBs (all running backs). With Jackson winning this past season, quarterbacks have now won seven straight MVPs — the longest stretch by any position in league history.
  • Two defensive players have won in league history, with Lawrence Taylor being the last to do it in 1986. Brothers T.J. & JJ Watt are two of eight defensive players listed at 100-1.
  • Two positions that have never won the award are wide receiver and tight end. That doesn’t mean they never will, though. The top wideouts listed are all at 200-1, featuring Michael Thomas, Julio Jones, Chris Godwin, Mike Evans, DeAndre Hopins and Odell Beckham Jr. Only three tight ends are listed and can all be found at 300-1 — Travis Kelce, Zach Ertz and George Kittle.
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