When you think of past recipients of the National Football League’s Most Valuable Player, the first names that come into mind are those of quarterbacks. The glory and glamour boys are always the first in line when the awards are handed out at the end of the season.
Only twice in the past 11 years, has the MVP gong been awarded to a non-QB. On those 2 occasions a running back has taken the accolade home.
Many peoples favourite for this years league MVP is Denver Broncos playcaller Peyton Manning, who is having another outstanding season throwing the ball. Even more remarkable if you take in to consideration his serious neck injury, which ended his time with the Indianapolis Colts, and almost ended his career.
If the people that have the final say in choosing the standout player happen to overlook the passers this year, then surely only one other player is deserving this season.
Minnesota Viking’s running back, Adrian Peterson.
Since his introduction into the league in 2007 he has ripped up practically all records that could have been broken in the early stages of a backs career. Going over 1,000 yards with ease in each of his first 4 seasons, he fell agonisingly short in his 5th.
Agonising being the right term to use. On December 24th, 2011, during a Vikings 33-26 over Washington, “AP” went down with his own career threatening injury. His left knee was in bits with a torn ACL and MCL.
This really is the sort of injury that all athletes fear and dread, hardly anyone comes back from this to perform at anywhere near the level they were at before. Atlanta Falcons back Jamaal Anderson, and Broncos Terrell Davis, tried to come back from this setback but were never the same and forced into early retirement.
So, after 8 short months of rehabilitation, having rewritten the protocol for returning from this career killing injury, Peterson was back in the game. Confident of his ability to carry the load, Head Coach Leslie Frazier made the decision to start Peterson in opening week action. There was some hesitation at first as he felt his way back into the full speed of games, it wasn’t until week 4 that he broke through 100 yards for a single game.
The past month though has been nothing short of incredible.
- Arizona beat up for 153 yards
- Tampa Bay victim of 123
- Seattle were dominated for 182
- Detroit crushed with 171
Adrian Peterson is most definitely back. He’s hitting the hole hard, finding the outside with great vision, and his breakaway speed is clearly evident,
Sitting on top of the NFL rushing list on 1,128 yards, there is every chance he will beat his best year in 2008, when he gained 1,760.
An outside possibility of reaching 2,000 yards for the season.
Now that really would be MVP worthy.