The NFL MVP finalists have been named for the 2022 season, with three of them also vying for the Offensive Player of the Year award.
Patrick Mahomes of the Kansas City Chiefs, Jalen Hurts of the Philadelphia Eagles, Justin Jefferson of the Minnesota Vikings, Josh Allen of the Buffalo Bills and Joe Burrow of the Cincinnati Bengals are the final five for the Associated Press 2022 NFL MVP.
The award has already been voted on by 50 members of the media who regularly cover the NFL across the country ahead of the start of the playoffs. The award will be announced on February 9 at the NFL Honors.
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Mahomes is considered the favorite after throwing for 5,250 yards with 41 touchdowns in the regular season. He already has an MVP under his belt after his sophomore debut in the 2018 season with 5,097 passing yards and 50 passing touchdowns with a 113.8 passer rating.
While he knows he’s in the MVP conversation, Mahomes is focused on an AFC Championship rematch against Burrow and the Bengals this Sunday. Mahomes is battling a high ankle sprain he suffered against the Jacksonville Jaguars in their 27-20 victory in the AFC divisional round.
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Hurts delivered an outstanding season with his arm and legs, passing for 3,701 yards and rushing for 760 yards to combine for 35 touchdowns. His performance alongside weapons like AJ Brown, Miles Sanders and DeVonta Smith has led the Eagles to the No. 1 seed in the NFC and the NFC Championship at Lincoln Financial Field on Sunday against the San Francisco 49ers.
Jefferson is the only non-quarterback in the MVP finalist pool, but he certainly deserves a spot there after totaling 128 receptions with 1,809 yards and eight touchdowns this season with the Vikings.
Mahomes, Hurts and Jefferson are also nominated for Offensive Player of the Year.
As for the AP Defensive Player of the Year award, the 49ers’ Nick Bosa, the Chiefs’ Chris Jones and the Cowboys’ Micah Parsons are the finalists in that category.
Bosa’s 18.5 sacks this season make him the top dog right now, while Jones finished the year with 15.5 and Parsons with 14.5. Bosa and Jones expect more this weekend and possibly in the Super Bowl.
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Finalists for the AP Coach of the Year award see the New York Giants’ Brian Daboll, the Jaguars’ Doug Pederson and the 49ers’ Kyle Shanahan making the cut.
Daboll entered a Giants organization that went 4-13 last season and has been stuck at the bottom of the league since their last playoff berth in 2016. That all changed when they went 9-7. -1, and although it was voted earlier at the start of the playoffs, it also defeated the No. 3 Vikings in the wild card round to earn the team’s first playoff win since Super Bowl XLVI.
Pederson also turned a franchise around, as the Jaguars had a 9-8 record at the end of the regular season, cementing their place as AFC South champions. And similar to the Giants, they won their wild card round matchup, pulling off a miraculous victory over the Los Angeles Chargers after being down 27-0 in the game.
Finalists have also been named for the following awards.
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– Offensive Rookie of the Year: Kenneth Walker III of the Seattle Seahawks, Brock Purdy of the 49ers and Garrett Wilson of the New York Jets.
– Defensive Rookie of the Year: Jets’ Sauce Gardner, Detroit Lions’ Aidan Hutchinson and Seahawks’ Tariq Woolen
Comeback Player of the Year: Giants’ Saquon Barkley, 49ers’ Christian McCaffrey and Seahawks’ Geno Smith
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– Assistant Coach of the Year: DeMeco Ryans of the 49ers, Ben Johnson of the Lions, Shane Steichen of the Eagles