The hype train for the 2022 NFL season hasn’t just left the station, it leapt off the tracks, burst into the stratosphere, and started singing a collection of Tupac’s greatest hits.
People are going crazy with some of these predictions! I mean who in their right minds is picking the Lions and Jets to make the playoffs? Delusional, I tell you!
But nothing displays the delusion befallen many NFL fans though quite like the MVP betting trends.
After watching Aaron Rodgers win back-to-back MVP awards, and seeing Patrick Mahomes dazzle on our flatscreens every Sunday (or Thursday or Monday), and peeping Josh Allen and Justin Herbert taking monumental leaps toward superstardom, you’d think NFL fans would pounce at the opportunity to bet on one of them to win the MVP award next season. Nope! Not even close.
According to OddsChecker US, the person receiving the most bets for NFL MVP in 2022 isn’t even in the top-10 in terms of odds. Philadelphia’s Jalen Hurts has received 25.9 percent of all bets for NFL MVP over the last 30 days. He has +4000 — or 40-to-1 — odds of taking home the hardware. That’s almost twice as many bets as the next closest competitor, Cincinnati’s Joe Burrow.
Who do you think is third on this list? I guarantee you can’t guess it. Did you guess Matt Ryan? Bullshit. No chance you called that. He’s received 11.1 percent of votes at +8000 odds. However, both Hurts’ and Ryan’s appearances on this list pale in comparison to who is receiving the fourth-most votes for MVP… San Francisco’s Trey Lance! HUH?! He’s receiving 7.4 percent of all bets. That’s more than Rodgers and Mahomes combined, and equal to Allen and Herbert combined (both are receiving 3.7 percent of bets right now)!
I know the kid is talented and Kyle Shanahan traded three first-round picks to get him, so they must have a lot of faith in him, but NFL MVP? Sure, Patrick Mahomes took home the award a year after sitting behind Alex Smith, but that was an anomaly. We can’t expect Lance to experience the same sort of success, can we? That’s a tall order for anyone no matter how talented, and while second-year QBs have a tendency to exceed expectations, only two won the MVP after starting less than five games their rookie season — Mahomes and Kurt Warner. Are we really ready to put Lance on that level after completing just 57.7 percent of his passes last year, all while Jimmy Garoppolo is still on the 49ers’ roster? I’m not ready for that. Props to everyone with the guts to make a call like that, but not me.
Lance has received so many bets in the month of May, that after opening at 200-to-1 odds to win the MVP, Caesars’ Sportsbook has since dropped his odds to 60-to-1, yet people still keep betting on this man! Stop! Vegas is literally just taking money from you at this point. They aren’t swapping the odds because they took a look back at Lance’s film tape and thought “You know what? He’s got that dawg in him!” They’re only doing this because so many people are putting money on him that, by lowering his odds to 60-to-1, people will be more inclined to put more money on him because 60-to-1 doesn’t have nearly the same payout as 200-to-1 does.
I’m all for long shots when it comes to betting. I’ve been known to put money on crazy eight-game parlays just for the hell of it, so if you put a chunk of change on Lance at 200-to-1 odds, I respect it. Go for broke or don’t go at all, am I right? However, even at these reduced odds, Lance is still seeing money poured in from everywhere, while respected veterans like former MVP Lamar Jackson, Kyler Murray, Dak Prescott, and Matthew Stafford are seeing little if any love from bettors. Each of them has a payout of better than 10-to-1 and we know for a fact that they will be their team’s starters Week 1. I know the presumption is that Garoppolo will be gone by the start of the season, but until that day comes, and until the whole Deebo Samuel situation is figured out, claiming Lance as next year’s MVP seems like a bit of a reach.