For the second time in his career, Kansas City Chiefs quarterback link-placeholder-0] was voted The Associated Press NFL [Most Valuable Player.
Now he’ll attempt to add two-time Super Bowl winner to his already prestigious resume on Sunday against the Philadelphia Eagles.
For Mahomes to become just the seventh player to win MVP and a Super Bowl in the same season, he’ll need to break a long and dubious streak of MVPs coming up short in the biggest of big games.
The last nine AP NFL MVPs to play in the Super Bowl the same year lost the big game, according to NFL Research. Adding more historically bad mojo, the last to do so was Tom Brady, whose New England Patriots lost in Super Bowl LII to the Eagles.
Mahomes has rattled off ridiculous numbers and defied logic throughout an already spectacular career of just six seasons. However, history isn’t on his side heading into Sunday.
No player this century has captured the league’s highest on-field honor and won a Super Bowl in the same season. It’s a feat that hasn’t been accomplished since 1999 when Kurt Warner led the Rams to a triumph after introducing himself to the football world in the first season of a Hall of Fame career.
Players to Win NFL MVP, Play in Super Bowl in Same Season (since 2000)
|KC Patrick Mahomes||LVII||???|
|NE Tom Brady||LII||Lost|
|ATL Matt Ryan||LI||Lost|
|CAR Cam Newton||50||Lost|
|DEN Peyton Manning||XLVIII||Lost|
|IND Peyton Manning||XLIV||Lost|
|NE Tom Brady||XLII||Lost|
|SEA Shaun Alexander||XL||Lost|
|OAK Rich Gannon||XXXVII||Lost|
|STL Kurt Warner||XXXVI||Lost|
Quarterbacks to win an NFL MVP and play a Super Bowl are 0-8 since 2000, per NFL Research, and adding to Mahomes’ statistical stress is that he’s squaring off with Eagles QB Jalen Hurts, the MVP runner-up. Super Bowl LVII will be the fourth instance in which the MVP and MVP runner-up have played against each other. In the previous three showdowns, the runner-up took home the world championship.
MVP vs. MVP Runner-Up in Super Bowl Matchups
|MVP||MVP Runner-up||Super Bowl|
|KC Patrick Mahomes||PHI Jalen Hurts||LVII|
|ATL Matt Ryan||NE Tom Brady||LI|
|IND Peyton Manning||NO Drew Brees||XLIV|
|CIN Ken Anderson||SF Joe Montana||XVI|
Having defeated the Eagles during a 2021 matchup in his only start against the team, Mahomes would join Warner, Brett Favre (Green Bay Packers; 1996), Steve Young (San Francisco 49ers; 1994), Joe Montana (49ers; 1989), Terry Bradshaw (Pittsburgh Steelers; 1978) and Bart Starr (Packers; 1966) as the only players to win an MVP and Super Bowl in the same season with a triumph on Sunday.
It would be the latest and greatest accomplishment for the five-time Pro Bowler, who won his first MVP in the 2018 season and a Super Bowl the year after.
If Mahomes and the Chiefs come up short, though, he will become the 10th player in a row to win the league’s highest individual honor and fall days later striving for the NFL’s pinnacle of team achievement.