If you want to win betting on the Super Bowl MVP each year, simply pick the quarterback of whichever team you think will win the big game. Alas, this year it’s almost a pick’em with the NFC champion Philadelphia Eagles as 1-point favorites on the NFL odds against the AFC champion Kansas City Chiefs.
The MVP has come from the winning team every year except 1971, when Dallas linebacker Chuck Howley won the award despite the Cowboys’ loss in Super Bowl V to the Baltimore Colts. Harvey Martin and Randy White were named co-MVPs of Super Bowl XII, the only time co-MVPs have been chosen
The MVP favorite this time is Eagles QB Jalen Hurts with Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes next at +125 – and then there’s a huge drop-off to Kansas City tight end Travis Kelce at +1200.
Mahomes is going to win his second regular-season MVP and looks to join a rare club of two-time Super Bowl MVPs as well. Three years ago, the Chiefs beat the 49ers 31-20 in the Super Bowl and Mahomes was the MVP. In the fourth quarter, Mahomes helped the Chiefs erase a 10-point deficit with three consecutive touchdown drives. He finished 26-of-42 for 286 yards with three total touchdowns (two passing, one rushing), two interceptions and a 78.6 passer rating.
He joined Tom Brady (Super Bowl XLIX) and Terry Bradshaw (XIV) as the only players to win Super Bowl MVP despite throwing multiple interceptions. At the time, Mahomes became the youngest quarterback to be named Super Bowl MVP, joining Brady as the only ones to do so before turning 25. Mahomes didn’t play well in his last Super Bowl trip two years ago, however, as Kansas City was dominated in a loss to Brady and the Bucs.
After throwing two TD passes in the AFC title game win over Cincinnati, Mahomes now has 32 career touchdown passes in the playoffs, matching Dan Marino for the eighth-most in NFL history. It was his 10th career playoff win and he is now the youngest quarterback in league history to win double-digit playoff games.
Hurts, who will play in his first Super Bowl, probably will finish second in regular-season MVP voting. In the NFC title game win over San Francisco, Hurts completed 15-of-25 passes for 121 yards, adding 11 carries for 39 additional yards and a touchdown.
Thirty-five years after Doug Williams became the first Black quarterback to start in the Super Bowl, this Super Bowl will have two Black starting quarterbacks for the first time.
"To be on the world stage and have two Black quarterbacks start in the Super Bowl, I think it’s special, and I’ve learned more and more about the history of the Black quarterback since I’ve been in this league,” Mahomes said Thursday. "The guys that came before me and Jalen set the stage for this, and now, I’m just glad that we can kind of set the stage for guys that are kids that are coming up now.
No tight end has ever won Super Bowl MVP but if one is ever going to, it will likely be Kelce. He was iffy for the AFC title game with a back injury but had seven catches for 78 yards and a touchdown. Kelce now has the second-most receiving yards (1,467) in NFL postseason history, trailing only Jerry Rice (2,245). His 17 consecutive playoff games with three or more receptions marks the longest streak in league history.
Mahomes and Kelce have connected for 13 career touchdowns in the postseason, making them the second-most productive duo in NFL playoff history. Only the New England Patriots‘ Brady and Rob Gronkowski (15 touchdowns) teamed up for more scores in the playoffs.
No running back has won the Super Bowl MVP Award this century. Philly’s Miles Sanders is +2200 and Kansas City’s Isaiah Pacheco, a seventh-round rookie, is +4500. Could a kicker win MVP for the first time? That likely would only happen in a defensive battle and that’s very unlikely in this one as the Chiefs were the AFC’s top-scoring team and the Eagles were No. 1 in the NFC.
Kansas City kicker Harrison Butker is +15000 as is Philadelphia counterpart Jake Elliott.
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