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Wednesday, November 11, 2009
Mike Sando's MVP Watch

By Mike Sando

Thirty-four quarterbacks, 17 running backs, two defensive players and one kicker have won MVP honors in the NFL since 1957.

Past MVPs (as awarded annually by the Associated Press) played for teams that won 79.6 percent of their games, or an average of 12.7 games won over a 16-game schedule.

Each of the 54 MVPs and co-MVPs played for a winning team.

The 1997 Detroit Lions (9-7, .563) are the only team to produce an MVP without winning at least 62.5 percent of their games (Barry Sanders shared MVP honors with Brett Favre that season).

Quarterbacks have won seven of the last nine MVP awards playing for teams that won 12.9 games on average (median was 12 victories). Quarterbacks and running backs have won the last 24 MVP awards since Lawrence Taylor prevailed following the 1986 season.

These are a few things to keep in mind when wondering why quarterbacks and running backs dominate the latest MVP Watch list even though some others might be enjoying more impressive individual seasons.