It has seemed inevitable since early this season that Tom Brady would win NFL MVP.
The odds finally reflect that.
Heading into the non-Thanksgiving part of the Week 12 schedule, Brady is the favorite to win MVP at BetMGM. Before Week 11, Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen was the favorite. A lopsided loss to the Indianapolis Colts knocked him back, and as of Friday his odds hadn't rebounded too much after a big Thanksgiving performance.
Brady is +240 to win MVP. There's a pretty big gap to Allen, the second favorite, at +550. Los Angeles Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford is next at +900 and everyone else is at least 10-to-1.
If you like someone other than Brady to win MVP you'll get a good number. But Brady won't be easy to beat.
Tom Brady leads the pack
MVP awards are usually about quarterbacks and narratives. Brady has both boxes checked.
Brady winning MVP at age 44 would be one of the most amazing stories in American sports history. Brady already holds the record for oldest MVP in any major American sport, and he set that in 2017. He's four years older now.
There has also been no success for any quarterback, or really any non-kicker, of Brady's age in the NFL. Every other quarterback in history has been washed up or retired by 44. Brady has 3,177 yards and leads the NFL with 29 passing touchdowns. Allen is second at 25, and he already played in Week 12.
Tampa Bay is going to win its division and Brady has shown no signs of slowing down. Someone like Allen or Stafford would need a massive finish to beat him.
Who could beat Brady?
Allen hasn't dropped much, despite a moderately disappointing season for the Bills as a whole. He's still in range and had a big four-touchdown game on Thanksgiving.
If a team like the Green Bay Packers, Dallas Cowboys or Los Angeles Rams ends up getting the No. 1 seed in the NFC, the quarterbacks of those teams would have that argument over Brady. It's not a logical argument, because football is a team sport, but it wouldn't be the first time a quarterback got MVP consideration simply because his team had a better record than another MVP candidate's team.
There's also the chance of Brady suffering an injury, though that seems low. Brady has been healthy through almost all of his career. But still, injury seems more likely than a slump, because it has cost a lot of bettors a lot of money the past few years waiting for Brady to fall off.
The 2021 NFL MVP is Brady's award to lose with about a month-and-a-half left. And what a story that would be.