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Does Jalen Hurts Deserve to be MVP?

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Despite missing the Philadelphia Eagles’ Christmas Eve game against the Dallas Cowboys, Jalen Hurts remains in the conversation for Most Valuable Player in the NFL in 2022. The Eagles have lost just one game with Hurts at the helm, and the quarterback has put up his share of impressive stat lines along the way. But with the likes of Joe Burrow, Patrick Mahomes, and Josh Allen also in the mix for MVP, what can he say for himself now with the missed game?

Current Vegas Odds for MVP (FanDuel Sportsbook):

  • Mahomes: -500
  • Burrow: +600
  • Allen: +1000
  • Hurts: +1100

It’s important to look deeply into the numbers each of these players has put up to grasp each of their claims to MVP. Hurts has thrown for 3,472 yards in 14 games. For reference, Mahomes has thrown for 4,720 yards, Burrow for 4,260, and Allen for 4,029, all in 15 games. Allen leads all four in passing attempts, leaving his completion percentage at 63.4, which is also the lowest of the four. But Buffalo’s offense goes almost exclusively through him, to a greater extent than any of the others.

This is also shown in the running game, where Allen’s 746 rushing yards dwarfs Mahomes’s 321 and Burrow’s 247. Hurts has 747 in one less game. He also has 13 rushing touchdowns, which is six more than Allen’s total. Hurts’s 13 rushing touchdowns is just one away from Cam Newton’s 14 in 2011 for the most by a quarterback in a single season in the history of the NFL. With two regular season games remaining, should Hurts find himself on track to play, Newton’s record won’t be standing much longer.

The comparison of Hurts and Newton is interesting to examine further. Newton won the NFL’s MVP award in 2015, a season in which he too led his team to a season with just a single loss as a starter. But Hurts’s numbers are better in certain areas.

2015 Cam Newton (16 starts):

  • 3,837 passing yards
  • 38 passing touchdowns
  • 7.8 yards gained per pass attempt
  • 10 interceptions
  • 636 rushing yards
  • 10 rushing touchdowns

2022 Jalen Hurts (through 14 starts):

  • 3,472 passing yards
  • 22 passing touchdowns
  • 8.2 yards gained per pass attempt
  • 5 interceptions
  • 747 rushing yards
  • 13 rushing touchdowns

The only knock on Hurts’s chances for MVP is that missed start against the Cowboys on Christmas Eve. Mahomes, Burrow, and Allen all have an additional start to their credit. It isn’t clear at this point if Hurts will be missing either of the Eagles’ remaining games, with speculation lending itself in either direction at the moment. If he plays in the last two games, his chances are really good. If he doesn’t play in one or both of the remaining games, he’ll fall out entirely, and Mahomes will likely end up with the award on his reputation, let alone his stats.

Written by
Brock Wells

Brock is a Master's student in Film and Media Studies at Arizona State University and a member of the International Association of Professional Writers & Editors.

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