Both awards are voted on by a panel of nationwide media members which makes the results even more puzzling because these are the guys that cover the teams on a weekly basis. How can a guy be named the MVP of the league by a whopping 32-4 vote and then finish second in the POY voting, 22-9? And how can the POY not receive a single vote in the MVP balloting? It makes about as much sense as the Vikings naming Tavaris Jackson their starter in the playoffs.
And while I don’t agree with the shared philosophy of many that the MVP has to come from a winning team, let’s not forget that Brees and the Saints came withing two points of reaching the playoffs, and the fact that Brees came withing a few yards of breaking Dan Marino’s long-standing single-season passing yards record, all while playing without his top three playmakers (Marques Colston, Reggie Bush and Jeremy Schockey) for much of the season. Also consider that Brees threw for more than 1,000 yards more than Manning, tossed seven more touchdown passes, produced more yards per completion and finished with higher quarterback rating than Manning, and it’s hard to argue that the voting criteria for these awards is out of whack.
Don’t get me wrong, Manning and the Colts rallied from a terrible start and were the fashionable pick to roll through the AFC in the postseason because of their late-season surge. But regular-season success in the NFL is worth about as much as much as a Ryan Leaf rookie card and the high-powered Colts and Manning were one and done come the postseason.
So the question remains, should a player be punished for playing on an injury-ravished team that finishes 8-8 and falls short of making the playoffs? Just because Manning and the Colts played one more game than the Saints doesn’t mean he had a better season than Brees, does it? The numbers definitively say “no.”
If you believe Manning deserved to win the award, I’d love to hear your thoughts and justification. Click on the comments section below the post and let me hear ya.