The votes are in, and the MVP is …

| November 2, 2010

This week, we’re debuting a new feature — our votes for the MVP award, based on secret ballots from our team of analysts. (Apologies to the excellent Mike Sando, who does his top 10 every week for ESPN.com).

Tallying up the votes, one question begs asking: When did the Kansas City Chiefs start producing MVP candidates? Between our nine voters, 31 players got mentions, and three from Kansas City managed to sneak their way into the top 10: Tamba Hali, Brandon Flowers and Jamaal Charles.

Not bad for three guys drafted no higher than 20th — and all by former GM Carl Peterson, who was run out of town in 2008, months after he picked six of the Chiefs’ current 22 starters in the 2008 draft (including Flowers and Charles).

On to the list, compiled by awarding 10 points for a first-place vote, nine for second, etc. — much better than the Associated Press’ asinine method of every writer picking one player. Not surprisingly, since we actually realize that non-QBs play the game, there’s a good mix of positions in our top 20: QB, RB, T, OLB, ILB, CB and DE. But the list is led by the only player to appear on all 10 ballots, and whose name is fairly familiar to sports fans.

1.Peyton Manning, Indianapolis (8 first place votes, 97 points): Yep. Manning is well on his way to a fifth MVP, and there’s really not much of an argument to be made against him. The two voters who didn’t have him No. 1 had him no worse than third.

2. Philip Rivers, San Diego (1 first-place vote, 56 points): While Rivers deserves a lot of credit — and is the only player in the top 10 from a losing team — Antonio Gates didn’t receive a single mention despite his nine touchdown catches in eight games.

3. Brandon Flowers, Kansas City (55 points): Flowers appeared on all but one ballot, and is more or less replicating the Darrelle Revis season from a year ago — like Revis in 2009, he’s being targeted plenty and doing the job (37.4 defensive passer rating). And Flowers Island has an even better ring to it.

4. Tamba Hali, Kansas City (48 points): Monster pass-rusher wasn’t listed on three ballots, probably because of his so-so run defense, but 53 total QB disruptions in seven games? Sick.

5. Trent Cole, Philadelphia (39 points): On a team with a young offense and facing a tough schedule, Cole’s consistently great play in all phases deserves respect. No player in the league over the past three seasons has been more dominant on a weekly basis.

6. Clay Matthews, Green Bay (38 points): Speaking of dominant, only an injury has kept him from the top of this list. His +10.0 rating in Week 1 vs. Philly is the stuff of legends.

7. Jake Long, Miami (1 first-place vote, 19 points): After the top six, there was a clear fall off to a scattered group of candidates. Long leads those thanks to Ben Stockwell, who sounded a rallying cry for linemen everywhere with his selection of Long No. 1.

8. Jamaal Charles, Kansas City (18 points): You don’t average 6.5 yards a carry over a half season in the NFL, period. But Charles is doing it, behind a good-not-great Chiefs line. As a bonus, he’s great in the receiving game (+2.5) and a solid pass-blocker (+1.1).

9 (tie). Adrian Peterson, Minnesota (16 points): The great season by Purple Jesus is being obscured by all of the dog-like behavior in Minnesota. Jared Allen, Brett Favre and Randy Moss all tanked, but Peterson (3.3 yards after contact this year, up from 2.9 a year ago) is getting it done.

9 (tie). Ray Lewis, Baltimore (16 points): Lewis is a great player having a great year, and you know his value goes beyond the field.

Also receving votes: Haloti Ngata (15), Jason Jones (15), Ahmad Bradshaw (14), Roddy White (14), Tom Brady (14), Brandon Lloyd (10), Aaron Rodgers (10), Darren McFadden (7), Sam Bradford (6), Damien Woody (6), Lawrence Timmons (4), D’Brickashaw Ferguson (4), LaDainian Tomlinson (4), Matt Ryan (4), Michael Vick (3), Carl Nicks (3), Zach Miller (3), Peyton Hillis (2), Josh Freeman (1), Andre Johnson (1), Kevin Williams (1).

  • http://www.profootballfocus.com Khaled Elsayed

    Interesting one, especially with the Chiefs having three candidates in the top ten. Does having three guys playing lights out make each player less valuable?

    The interesting omission in my mind is Gates although in my case I put that down more to how much more valuable I think Rivers is.

  • Nathan Jahnke

    I considered putting all three Chiefs on my list but I also thought since there were so many I omitted Charles. I think having two players who are both excellent at rushing the QB would kind of cancel each other out in terms of ranking them for MVP, but these three players play such different roles for the Chiefs that still losing any of them would hurt the team a lot.

  • maeby

    SUHHHHHHHHHH

  • elkman8102

    “Fellow Raven Ray Lewis also weighed in on Sunday with an impressive contribution. Lewis racked up 11 solo tackles, 8 of which were stops, a sack and the crucial forced fumble and recovery in overtime which led to the game winning field goal. Lewis’ +5.2 grading for the game was his 7th consecutive positive rating on the year elevating him to +16.2 for the season, enough to be the #1 rated PFF ILB.”

    It says above, taken from the IDP Fantasy section of this website that Lewis has his “7th consecutive positive rating on the year…..and is enough to be the #1 rated PFF ILB.”

    Then in this MVP voting artcile it says Lewis doesn’t grade out among the top 5 of ILB?

    Which is it?

    • http://www.profootballfocus.com Jonathan Comey

      Sorry Elkman, seems like we misread the coverage … he is in the top 5, and we’ll amend above.

      • elkman8102

        No problem man. Thanks for fixing it!

  • jakuvious

    I think some of what is so impressive about each Chiefs candidate (granted I don’t watch as much football as you guys do), is that while we have a fair number of top performers, there’s usually a huge dropoff between them and the guy next to them. Hali is great rushing the passer, but for KC, ONLY Hali is even at the good level, at least on most plays. So Hali gets a great rush, but not many other players do, if any, which makes Flowers’s play in coverage still impressive.