Think about this. The Denver Broncos beat the San Diego Chargers last week as quarterback Peyton Manning and Co. were held to a season-low 28 points.
What remains interesting is the fact that although the Denver defense is playing better these days, the team has still given up 20 or more points in all but one of their nine games this season.
And that’s why Manning remains the front-runner for MVP honors. Minus the veteran quarterback, the Broncos may be in a world of trouble.
Then again, if Manning isn’t able to avoid the potent pass rush of the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday, hurting could bring on a new meaning for he and his team.
And as for a few other very worthy candidates this season…
2. QB Drew Brees, New Orleans Saints: Last season, the Saints’ signal-caller threw for 5,177 yards and 43 scores but was also picked off 19 times, tied for the most in the league. Brees is on course for another 5,000 yards and 40 scores, which would mark the third consecutive season he has achieved those figures. And only Peyton Manning has thrown for more yards and more touchdowns in 2013.
3. QB Matthew Stafford, Detroit Lions: Not only does the Lions’ talented quarterback have his team in first place in the NFC North, Stafford is in the midst of a bounce-back campaign. In 2011, he threw for 41 scores and only 16 interceptions, but last season, Stafford threw only 20 touchdown passes and was picked off 17 times. In 2013, Detroit’s signal-caller has served up nearly three times as many touchdown passes (19) than interceptions (seven).
4. RB Jamaal Charles, Kansas City Chiefs: Under new head coach Andy Reid, we have seen a different side of the talented running back. Charles not only leads the team in rushing yards (725) but receptions, as well. His 47 catches are already a career high, and there are still seven games to play. The former Pro Bowler has also scored eight of the team’s 16 offensive touchdowns this season.
5. QB Tom Brady, New England Patriots: The defense is better in many regards these days, and the Patriots are running the ball with some commitment. But Brady still makes the Patriots go and to ignore that fact is somewhat foolish. He and the team not only get back to action after a week off, but when we last saw New England, the veteran quarterback was coming off his best performance of the season.
In The Discussion
6. WR Calvin Johnson, Detroit Lions
7. QB Philip Rivers, San Diego Chargers
8. RB LeSean McCoy, Philadelphia Eagles
9. QB Andrew Luck, Indianapolis Colts
10. QB Russell Wilson, Seattle Seahawks