With Respect, Brett Favre is Your NFL MVP

By Jason Kettinger | Posted at 7:25 AM

It should not have been close. The scandal of it is that Brett Favre is already a three time MVP from the 1995-97 seasons, which was a record until now. That he lost the award to another great, Peyton Manning, in itself is not scandalous; that he lost it this season is.

Favre had 33 touchdown passes this season, only 1 fewer than Drew Brees — who did not win the award either — and threw the fewest interceptions (seven) of any starter in the league. Brees threw 11. The great Tom Brady threw the ball to the other squad 13 times. Peyton Manning threw sixteen interceptions, while throwing the same number of touchdown passes as Mr. Favre.

The quarterback rating, whose formula is admittedly shrouded in mystery but combines completion percentage, passing yards, and passing touchdowns into a useful number, favors Favre over the winner Manning as well. Manning's rating was 99.9 out of a best possible number of 158.3. Favre's was 107.2. Brees posted the best in the league at 109.6. That’s a lot of numbers, but these numbers point to a simple question: What is going on here?

With Manning leading in only one significant category, having 4,500 passing yards under his belt (to Brees' 4,398 and Favre's 4,202) how did Peyton Manning win this award?

What is worse is that Manning got the lion's share of the 50 first place votes. Brees got 7. Favre got 1. It is undeniable that Manning was statistically the most proficient quarterback in this recently closed first decade in the twenty-first century. If we were looking for a “MVP of the decade” award, Manning’s triumph may have made more sense.

But this year, Brees was better and so was Favre. If Favre had lost this fourth MVP award to Brees narrowly, I would be OK with that. Brees was incredible. But Manning? No way. I don't even understand the reasoning. Manning isn't even the best player on his own team. Center Jeff Saturday is. Even Peyton agrees with that one.

I understand that centers don't win MVPs. That being said, in a year where every MVP vote went to quarterbacks, how did Brett Favre only get 1 vote? Football fans everywhere deserve an answer.

Maybe the voters have soured on Favre's retirement dance, which has commenced every spring for at least 5 years. Maybe they are getting revenge for all the rhapsodic praise lavished on Favre in that same five years by announcers and fans alike.

I am guilty of this.

We all are, because we were late in appreciating this legend, whose prime in the 1990s was in a league that still included Dan Marino, Joe Montana, John Elway, and Troy Aikman at that position.

Given the chance to shine on his own, he should have been able to add another laurel to his record. The fact remains that Brett Favre, a three-time MVP and Super Bowl champion who has started every game since September 20, 1992, put up his best season in his 19th year at the age of 40.

Is that worth more than one vote? It is to me. So how did this happen? Oh, I almost forgot: the award is given by the Associated Press. Shame on them.

Jason Kettinger is a contributing editor to Open for Business.

Favre is the best QB of all time, and an amazingly tough guy.

His record for “starts” will never be broken.

Posted by Don - Jan 19, 2010 | 3:35 PM

I understand and agree with everything that you are saying,but I think you have lost the meaning of M.V.P. The most valuable player is what we are looking for, not the one with the best or better numbers. I am a Brett Favre HATER, but this season I have had no choice but to tip my hat to him time, and time again. Peyton Manning is not surrounded by the talent that Brett is. And THAT is the reason I agree with him winning the award this year. I have no question in my mind that HE is acting as the coach on this team and not the new guy, uh, whats his name??? (That was a joke< but an understandable one, right?) There is no DOUBT that if Manning left the Colts this season, not only would they not be in the playoffs, but they wouldn't finish with a winning record. His poise and confidence and the ability to GET THE JOB DONE is what makes him the Most Valuable Player… for the record, I am a 49ers fan so there are no biases in the above.

Posted by Michael Andrews - Jan 19, 2010 | 6:48 PM

You really think Peyton doesn't have that great of a team around him. He has the #1 o line in football. That is probably the most important factor for a QB. He was sacked 10 times compared with 38 for Brett Favre. Yet, Favre was still able to put up better numbers. AP really tailed off at the end of the year and I think people need to give Favre credit for what he means to this team. He is the MVP.

Posted by Nick - Jan 19, 2010 | 7:12 PM

The AP are a bunch of jerks, that more than likely are jealous as hell that Favre is doing as well as he is.
In their wildest dreams they could never be as successful as he is.
I am extremely grateful to the ONE person that had the intestinal fortitude to cast his vote for possibly the greatest QB, not to mention the most FUN to watch QB I will ever have the honor to watch. I hope that this comes back to haunt you losers for the rest of your life, it should, as it was vindictive and SO unfair.
Bad luck is my fervent wish for you and unstoppable success for the one who had balls to make an honest vote.
Packer fan for 50 years, Vikings/Favre fan for the rest of my life.

Posted by Anonymous - Jan 20, 2010 | 1:19 AM