NFL

Predicting NFL Awards in 5 years: Can Trey Lance win MVP?

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NFL Awards

Patrick Mahomes. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Everything in the NFL can change in five years, so who will be winning the NFL awards, from MVP to Coach of the Year, that far in the future?

The third installment of my “Future Week” is here. And with it comes an important reminder: It’s all fun. Forecasting the future is a tough, imperfect science — even more so in the NFL than perhaps in other arenas.

I’d be beyond thrilled to get just one prediction right, whether it’s with these NFL awards or in my other predictions throughout the week. After spending the last two days guessing the best player on each team in five years, I’ll name the award winners in that time as well.

I didn’t include Rookies of the Year because it would be too difficult to predict which high schoolers will be stars in five seasons. I also skipped naming a Comeback Player of the Year; it seems futile to predict a player to return from a big injury. Don’t worry, though, I still predicted everything from MVP to Coach of the Year using the most advanced logic and metrics I could think of.

Spoiler: There’s minimal logic and metrics used. I may have been better off flipping a coin. But that doesn’t diminish the point of the exercise.

NFL MVP: Patrick Mahomes

I know, it’s boring. You were probably hoping for a rookie like Trey Lance or a college quarterback like Spencer Rattler. I just can’t see Patrick Mahomes falling off from the high pedestal he’s placed himself on. Who knows, maybe the former MVP is so good it becomes too easy to pick him.

It’s like LeBron James in the NBA. You could probably pick him for MVP every year, which is why he doesn’t always win it. (We’ll save that discussion for another time.)

Although, Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers are just two players who went multiple years before winning their second MVP award. Whether it’s a then-established veteran like Mahomes, or a promising young passer like Joe Burrow or Justin Herbert, I don’t think we’ll ever see a non-QB win MVP again.

We’ve seen three do it since 2001 (Shaun Alexander, LaDainian Tomlinson, Adrian Peterson), with the last being Peterson in 2012. Perhaps a collegiate player like Spencer Rattler or D.J. Uiagalelei bursts onto the scene?

Time will tell, and it will likely tell me I’m wrong. Naming Mahomes for MVP would likely set him up to be the FedEx Air Player of the Year, too. At this rate, though, I’m sure it’ll be called the Amazon Air Player of the Year instead.

Other Active Candidates: Russell Wilson, Dak Prescott, Joe Burrow, Trey Lance

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