How to bet the NFL MVP race before the 2022 season begins

Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes during a preseason NFL football game against the Washington Commanders Saturday, Aug. 20, 2022, in Kansas City, Mo. (AP Photo/Ed Zurga)

There is no market to bet on quite like the NFL MVP race.

Aaron Rodgers has won back-to-back MVP awards, despite not entering the year as a favorite in either season. Prior to that, Patrick Mahomes of the Kansas City Chiefs and Lamar Jackson of the Baltimore Ravens each won an MVP award during their first full season as a starter with their respective team.

It truly is a fun way to have action on the NFL season, and this year’s MVP race figures to be extremely entertaining. Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen enters as the preseason favorite with a price of +700 at Caesars Sportsbook, which is the official odds partner of Bet Chicago Sports.

Four of the biggest names in the league are right behind Allen with 10/1 or better odds to win the top individual award this upcoming NFL season. Mahomes is +800, while Justin Herbert and Tom Brady are both listed at +900. Rodgers has a value of +1000 to win MVP for the third year in a row.

Let’s dive into everything you need to know before placing a bet on this market:

Recent NFL MVP winners

Like most of these award markets, it is completely narrative-driven. Writers who vote for this are human, and so there is a formula for winning the MVP. As long as you are a quarterback on an elite team, you can be considered. Anyone else? Better luck next time.

A non-quarterback has not won the award since 2012, when Minnesota running back Adrian Peterson accomplished that feat. A quarterback has won the MVP nine years in a row since then, and there is no reason to expect that to change in 2022. Cooper Kupp had a historic season for a receiver last season — and he managed to receive just one MVP vote.

In addition, a quarterback has to be on a winning team to be in the mix. Seven of the last nine winners were on teams that finished as the top seed in their respective conference. The other two MVP winners were on teams that claimed a No. 2 seed, which would have been good enough for a bye at the time before the league switched to a 14-team playoff.

YearMVP winnerTeamRecord
2021Aaron RodgersPackers13-4 (1 seed)
2020Aaron RodgersPackers13-3 (1 seed)
2019Lamar JacksonRavens14-2 (1 seed)
2018Patrick MahomesChiefs12-4 (1 seed)
2017Tom BradyPatriots13-3 (1 seed)
2016Matt RyanFalcons11-5 (2 seed)
2015Cam NewtonPanthers15-1 (1 seed)
2014Aaron RodgersPackers12-4 (2 seed)
2013Peyton ManningBroncos13-3 (1 seed)

How to bet the MVP market

In my opinion, there is no reason to be in a rush to bet on this market. Think about how quickly narratives change on some of the best quarterbacks in the league after a bad game. This market will be in flux throughout the year, setting up plenty of opportunities to buy low on talented signal callers.

For example, Kyler Murray was the MVP favorite for the first half of the 2021 season, while Rodgers started the season with a 38-3 loss to the New Orleans Saints in Week 1. Russell Wilson appeared to be the early favorite in back-to-back years during 2019 and 2020. Wilson ultimately didn’t receive a single vote, losing the award to Patrick Mahomes and Lamar Jackson in their respective seasons.

Identify players that you want to bet on for MVP, and then wait for your opportunity to pounce at a better price. For me, Mahomes is always a player I’m going to consider betting since he’s the best quarterback on the planet. Joe Burrow is sixth in odds at +1300, but I wouldn’t be surprised if he has a better price at some point this season.

The offseason is the time to take a chance on long-shot bets, including a number of second-year quarterbacks who offer intriguing upside. But you should fire on better candidates when the market ultimately adjusts too much during the regular season.

Betting odds for NFL MVP

Betting odds for the 2022 NFL MVP as provided by Caesars Sportsbook:

• Josh Allen, Buffalo Bills: +700

• Patrick Mahomes, Kansas City Chiefs: +800

• Justin Herbert, Los Angeles Chargers: +900

• Tom Brady, Tampa Bay Buccaneers: +900

• Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay Packers: +1000

• Joe Burrow, Cincinnati Bengals: +1300

• Russell Wilson, Denver Broncos: +1600

• Matthew Stafford, Los Angeles Rams: +1600

• Dak Prescott, Dallas Cowboys: +1700

• Lamar Jackson, Baltimore Ravens: +2000

• Kyler Murray, Arizona Cardinals: +2200

• Deshaun Watson, Cleveland Browns: +3000

• Jalen Hurts, Philadelphia Eagles: +3000

• Trey Lance, San Francisco 49ers: +3000

• Derek Carr, Las Vegas Raiders: +3000

• Tua Tagovailoa, Miami Dolphins: +5000

• Derrick Henry, Tennessee Titans: +5000

• Matt Ryan, Indianapolis Colts: +5000

• Kirk Cousins, Minnesota Vikings: +6000

• Jameis Winston, New Orleans Saints: +7500

• Cooper Kupp, Los Angeles Rams: +7500

• Mac Jones, New England Patriots: +7500

• All other selections are 100/1 or longer

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Shane Jackson

Shane Jackson

Shane Jackson is the Sports Betting Content Director for the Shaw Media Local News Network.