The NFL MVP award has been dominated by quarterbacks in recent years. Out of the last 15 MVP winners, 14 have been quarterbacks, including each of the last nine. This trend is likely to continue as the passing game becomes more and more important in the modern NFL.
The NFL season is quickly approaching, with several quarterbacks having a legitimate shot at winning the MVP award.
Here are the five most likely first-time winners in the 2022 campaign.
#5 Dak Prescott, Dallas Cowboys
Around the midway point of the 2021 NFL season, Dak Prescott was one of the top favorites to win the MVP award for his consistent performances. While his stats dropped off as the year went on, he remained incredibly efficient.
Prescott ranked third with a 104.2 passer rating and fourth with a 68.8 completion percentage, while throwing 37 touchdowns against just 10 interceptions during the 2021 season. He is projected to lead the Dallas Cowboys back to the playoffs in 2022, and if he does, he could be an MVP candidate again.
#4 Russell Wilson, Denver Broncos
Russell Wilson is the best quarterback over 30 years old who has never won an MVP award, despite several spectacular seasons with the Seattle Seahawks. Among his many accomplishments, he helped them win two NFC titles and a Super Bowl.
Wilson will begin the 2022 NFL season with a brand new team after being traded to the Denver Broncos this offseason. He will be surrounded by young and talented weapons such as Jerry Jeudy and Courtland Sutton. It will be interesting to see what the veteran can do in a new offensive system with a fresh supporting cast.
#3 Justin Herbert, Los Angeles Chargers
Justin Herbert was one of only two quarterbacks during the 2021 NFL season to eclipse 5,000 passing yards. He also completed 66 percent of his passes while throwing 38 touchdown passes, improving on his impressive rookie campaign from 2020.
Through two seasons with the Los Angeles Chargers so far, Herbert has already racked up 9,350 passing yards and 69 touchdown passes. If he continues at the rate he's going, it's almost guaranteed that he will win an MVP award at some point.
#2 Josh Allen, Buffalo Bills
Josh Allen is one of the preseason betting favorites to take home the MVP award for the 2022 NFL season. His unique combination of throwing power, rushing abilities, and composure makes him a special player.
Allen finished the 2021 season ranked in the top 10 in passing yards and passing touchdowns, while finishing in the top three among quarterbacks in rushing yards and rushing touchdowns. If he continues to thrive in both areas, he has as good a shot as anyone to win the NFL MVP.
#1 Joe Burrow, Cincinnati Bengals
Joe Burrow finished the 2021 season ranked third in the NFL MVP voting, despite playing the first full campaign of his career. He helped the Cincinnati Bengals win the AFC title last season while quickly emerging as one of the top quarterbacks in the league.
During Burrow's impressive 2021 season, he was the only quarterback to complete more than 70 percent of his passes. He was also ranked second in passer rating while leading the league with 8.9 yards per completion.