The best wide receiver in the National Football League has been recognized as a finalist for two major awards that will be announced at this year’s NFL Honors ceremony during Super Bowl week.
The award nominations were just announced, and Justin Jefferson has been named a finalist for both the NFL’s Most Valuable Player Award and the Offensive Player of the Year Award.
Seeing Jefferson nominated for MVP is a bit of a surprise, given that it should really be called “Most Valuable Quarterback.” The last non-quarterback to win the MVP Award was Adrian Peterson back in 2012, and he had to almost set the single-season rushing record to garner that sort of recognition. Jefferson is the only non-quarterback among this year’s nominees, as the other four players on the list are
- Patrick Mahomes (QB, Kansas City Chiefs)
- Josh Allen (QB, Buffalo Bills)
- Joe Burrow (QB, Cincinnati Bengals)
- Jalen Hurts (QB, Philadelphia Eagles)
Mahomes is the overwhelming favorite to win the award, and it will be absolutely stunning if he doesn’t. But just seeing Jefferson recognized for the award is a pretty big deal.
Less surprising is Jefferson’s nomination for Offensive Player of the Year, an award that he should be the odds-on favorite for. He’s up for the award along with Mahomes, Hurts, and Miami Dolphins wide receiver Tyreek Hill. After putting up more than 1,800 receiving yards this season and putting together several jaw-dropping performances, this should be Jefferson’s award to lose.
Unlike the MVP Award, the OPoY award doesn’t automatically go to a quarterback. Only one of the last five OPoY winners has been a quarterback, that being Mahomes back in 2018. Last year’s award went to Los Angeles Rams wide receiver Cooper Kupp, who won the receiving triple crown in 2021.
Once again, the winners of these awards will be announced at the annual NFL Honors ceremony on Thursday, 9 February.
Best of luck to Justin Jefferson on (hopefully) bringing home one of these big-time awards in a couple of weeks.