Matthew Stafford’s first two weeks of the season haven’t been all that surprising to Detroit Lions fans. He’s put up the kind of numbers that he has been ever since Jim Bob Cooter took over the offense halfway through the 2015 season. Through two weeks now, here’s a look at his statline, and where it ranks him in the NFL:
Completion percentage: 71.0 (7th)
Yards per attempt: 6.7 (18th)
Touchdowns: 6 (1st)
Interceptions: 1 (7th* among QBs that have played two games)
Passer rating: 114.6 (4th)
Rushing yards: 37 (9th)
While those numbers aren’t fantastic, they clearly put him among the top tier in the NFL, and now the Vegas odds are finally starting to take notice.
According to Bovada, Matthew Stafford now holds the best odds in the NFL to win the MVP for the 2017 season. Stafford, along with Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers now have 5/1 odd to win the award. Other notable quarterbacks with good odds are Derek Carr (9/1), Matt Ryan (10/1), Jameis Winston (10/1), Alex Smith (20/1) and Russell Wilson (20/1).
This is already a huge shift from where Stafford was in the national conversation during the offseason. Remember back in June when Stafford had the same odds (50/1) as Adrian Peterson and Eli Manning? Turns out that was just as ridiculous as we claimed it was at the time.
So what’s the big difference? Wins. The Lions are one of eight 2-0 teams in the league, and that’s what will ultimately win you MVP votes. If your team wins, your quarterback gets the praise. That’s how it has always worked.
So as long as the Lions keep winning, expect to see Stafford up there at the top of MVP consideration. However, the minute the Lions lose a game, expect him to fall back, regardless of how he actually plays.